A bill that supporters say will prevent serial sexual harassers in the workplace passed the Senate floor 23 to 13. HB 21 will enable victims of sexual harassment, retaliation and discrimination in the workplace to determine if a nondisclosure agreement should be part of a settlement with a former employer. Backers of the bill say it levels the playing field and prevents serial abuse. The bill is now headed to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, who is expected to sign it. According to Christopher Papalco, a University of New Mexico law student, 38 percent of sexual harassment claims in New Mexico involve repeat offenders.
A bill that protects victims of sexual harassment, retaliation and discrimination passed the House floor unanimously late Thursday night. The House voted 67-0 in support of HB 21, which prevents an employer from forcing a nondisclosure agreement on an employee who is settling over sexual harassment, discrimination or retaliation. Most cases never reach the courts, said Rep. Dayan Hochman-Vigil, D-Albuquerque, during the House floor discussion. Hochman-Vigil also said that more often than not the victim is no longer employed and cannot get a new job and needs to reach the settlement for financial survival. Proponents of the bill said during committee hearings that the bill really protects future potential victims and that enabling victims to speak about what happened to them can prevent serial abusers.
Only five New Mexicans gave a total of $32,000 to the joint fundraising committee that held a $10,000-per-person event in Albuquerque in late May. It’s unlikely the Trump Victory joint fundraising committee raised the $230,000 some might have expected for the May 24 event attended by 23 people who had paid to be there. A spokesman for the New Mexico GOP gave NMID that attendance number last month. Three New Mexicans donated $10,000 each while two others gave $1,000 each to the Trump Victory committee, according to a report filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission listing donations through June 30. Another joint fundraising committee for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump netted $13,450 from New Mexicans during the same period, records show.