By Michael Farhi, Esq.
A few weeks ago, we posted a blog called New Law To Limit Harassment and Discrimination in Political Campaigns Falls Short. One of the things we said in the blog was that a proposed new law to “remediate and prevent discrimination and harassment” occurring in New Jersey’s political campaigns” had serious flaws.
One of them was a section in the proposed law that restricted, by “hours worked,” on political campaign, staff members who would receive anti-harassment and anti-discrimination training. It had a 280-hour limitation for the number of hours of work that someone must give to a candidate or committee in order to receive anti-harassment and anti-discrimination training. We wrote:
Following the same “protect the harasser” reasoning, people working less than 280 hours on a campaign should also receive anti-harassment and anti-discrimination training – the number of hours worked is irrelevant.
Apparently, our blog got some attention on social media and beyond. On March 23, firm Partner Michael Farhi and firm Law Clerk Elissa Frank appeared before the Workgroup on Harassment, Sexual Assault and Misogyny in New Jersey Politics, headed by New Jersey State Sen. Loretta Weinberg. As reported in nj.com:
… [T]he proposed legislation would exempt people who work for less than four days a calendar year.
Employment attorney Michael Farhi and law clerk Elissa L. Frank of Kates Nussman Ellis Farhi & Earle, asked the workgroup to close this “gaping hole.” These short-time workers, who are often students conducting get out the vote or GOTV activities in the days before the election, are essential to a campaign and should be included, they argued.
“This may be the only opportunity a person may have to receive any anti-harassment and anti-discrimination training,” Frank told the workgroup.
The full article appears here.
Sen. Weinberg and the Workgroup members will now “try again” to fix the bill. We’ll be following their efforts to do so.