Kennedy urges Louisiana Legislature to remove loophole from nondisclosure bill

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) urged the Louisiana Legislature today to address a glaring oversight that guts a bill that is supposed to prohibit the use of nondisclosure agreements in sexual harassment allegations against public employees.

The governor’s executive counsel acknowledged this week that House Bill 197 still would allow victims to be silenced through agreements that prohibit them from making disparaging remarks. The woman who accused the governor’s deputy chief of staff, Johnny Anderson, of sexual harassment signed an agreement prohibiting her from making disparaging remarks about Anderson.

“The Louisiana Legislature is about to ban nondisclosure agreements but allow nondisparaging remarks’ agreements. That is utter insanity. We need to be serious about bringing sexual predators into the sunlight,” said Sen. Kennedy. “This is a mockery and a disservice to victims. By allowing ridiculous loopholes like this, we encourage violators who cover up their sins and pay their victims with taxpayer money.”

After recess, Sen. Kennedy will file the Stop Silencing Victims Act by prohibiting government employees from hiding behind nondisclosure agreements. The bill will apply to state and federal employees.

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