Sexual Harassment
December 24, 2022
Can its persistence be curbed?

Despite widespread anti-harassment training in workplaces and publicity about high-profile sexual assault cases, sexual harassment remains pervasive in the workplace and the U.S. military. In fact, several celebrities and politicians who have been accused of sexual harassment are trying to stage a comeback. Advocates for victims of workplace sexual harassment blame the continued prevalence in part on the widespread use of nondisclosure agreements (NDAs), which prevent victims from speaking out about workplace sexual harassment for fear of legal action and allow perpetrators to continue harassing victims. Congress and states are trying to rectify that issue. Congress passed a bipartisan bill aimed at ending NDAs specifically designed to keep employees from discussing instances of sexual harassment and sexual assault. Sixteen states also have passed laws limiting how employers can use NDAs.

Photo of Charlotte Bennett interview in New York on October 12, 2021. Charlotte Bennett, who once served as executive assistant to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, participates in an interview. She filed suit in September against the former governor, accusing him of sexual harassment. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Although two sexual harassment lawsuits have been filed against former New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, he is eyeing a political comeback, possibly by entering the race for governor in 2026.

Charlotte Bennett, who was once Cuomo’s executive assistant, filed a lawsuit in federal court in September against her former boss. The suit, which also seeks damages from three of Cuomo’s former top aides, accuses him of sexual harassment, gender discrimination and retaliation in violation of federal, state and city laws. 1