Sex scandals, once again, rock New York State politics. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) is under fire for his handling of two sexual misconduct complaints against Assemblyman Vito Lopez. Silver secretly settled two
complaints without referring them to the Assembly Ethics Committee. Why would anyone do that? He probably covered it up because: A) he is also guilty of sexual misconduct, B) he is covering up for a friend, C) he is corrupt, and/or D) he is stupid. In all cases, he should resign as demanded by republicans. Vito Lopez finally resigned.
Why do people in powerful positions sexually harassment their employees? Good question! Some think they are above the law. They have done it before and got away with it, and that encouraged them to continue their misconduct. People tend to forget that sex is also a value, not always in a positive way. Some leaders find the sex drive more powerful than values such as honesty, family, and loyalty. In my e-book, Leadership for New Managers: Book Two, I wrote about harassment in the workplace. Here is what I wrote:
Leader/managers need to be aware of harassment in the workplace and should eliminate it.
Harassment can take many forms including sexual, bullying, racial, religion, age, or disability, or personal appearance. Harassment may be verbal, non-verbal, or physical. Some 37% of the US work force has been bullied at some time during their work life, according to the Workplace Bullying Institute.
Failure to take action could result in a substantial lawsuit. Leader/managers are accountable for failing to prevent or stop harassment. Leader/managers should be aware and enforce organizational polices as well as the law. Leader/managers may have a role in the investigation of harassment, prosecution of the offender, supporting the victim(s), and healing the environment.