The New Jersey Senate has passed a bill that would ban nondisclosure agreements that conceal the details of sexual harassment in the workplace.
Phyllis Salowe-Kaye, the executive director of New Jersey Citizen, says confidentiality agreements keep abusive behaviors secret.
“This bill will right this wrong and ensure that no employer can take retaliatory action against a worker who refuses to sign a confidentiality agreement or speaks out about discriminatory practices.”
Attorney Nancy Erika Smith represents employees in workplace sexual harassment lawsuits.
“I have had the experience time and time again over 38 years when a woman complains of harassment, then learns she’s about to lose her job as a result of complaining or has already lost her job. Then we get a settlement so she can move on with her life and she’s told to shut up.”
Senator Loretta Weinberg believes her legislation to prevent the details from being concealed could help make abusive sexual harassment in the workplace stop.
She’s hoping the Assembly will also vote to approve the bill in the next few weeks.
The legislation would allow victims to maintain confidentiality if that’s their choice.
Those who decide to take action against violators and win would be awarded attorney fees and costs.