(AP) — The Hawaii House of Representatives is expected to update the chamber’s sexual harassment policy a year after its former speaker resigned to resolve allegations brought by several women.

House Speaker Scott Saiki said Monday the proposed new policy covers complainants who are members of the public, not just employees.

House of Representatives. 9 march 2017

The House voted to recommit HB 790 on a voice vote, making it difficult to know who supported and who opposed the measure.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

It specifies that employees or members of the public may take their complaints to the speaker, the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or the state Judiciary.

Existing policy calls for employee complaints to be filed to a supervisor, the House speaker or the chief clerk, who works for the speaker.

Former Speaker Joe Souki resigned in March. The only woman to publicly accused Souki, Rachael Wong, headed the state Department of Human Services and wasn’t a House employee.

Before you go

Civil Beat readership has more than doubled in the past nine months. That’s incredible growth for which we’re so grateful.

But for a small nonprofit newsroom that provides free content with no paywall, readership growth alone can’t sustain our journalism. The truth is that less than 1% of our monthly readers are financial supporters.

To remain a viable business model for local news, we need a higher percentage of readers-turned-donors.

Will you consider becoming a new donor today?

About the Author