SPRINGFIELD – Two measures taking aim at sexual assault in government by promoting transparency and the responsible use of taxpayer dollars are headed to the governor’s desk thanks to State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park).
The first, House Bill 4243, prohibits any public funds – including money that is appropriated for office allowances – from being paid to any person in exchange for his or her silence regarding an allegation of sexual harassment against an elected official.
“Taxpayer dollars should not be used as ‘hush money’ by disgraced elected officials who have betrayed the public’s trust,” Cullerton said. “Our goal is to let government officials know that we have zero tolerance for sexual harassment.”
Cullerton also passed House Bill 4242 which aims to stop the use of taxpayer dollars to settle sexual harassment claims by requiring taxing bodies to notify the public if they enter into a severance agreement with an employee or contractor that has been accused of sexual assault or discrimination.
“Taxpayer dollars should not be used to pay off administrators and employees who are guilty of committing sexual harassment or discrimination,” Cullerton said. “The Me Too movement is an essential effort to push workplaces and society toward a zero-tolerance atmosphere and this is a good step to move Illinois in that direction.”