Bill would ban secrecy in some sexual misconduct settlements

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A bid to prohibit Louisiana agencies from keeping victims of sexual harassment silent in settlements involving public funds has received backing from House lawmakers.

The House voted 91-0 Monday without debate to send the proposal by Baton Rouge Republican Rep. Franklin Foil to the Senate.

The Advocate reports the measure would ban use of non-disclosure agreements in sexual harassment or sexual assault cases settled with public funds, if the claim is made against a state official or agency.

At least two high-profile Louisiana officials have resigned in recent years amid accusations of sexual harassment.

Settlement of the claim against former Secretary of State Tom Schedler included a non-disclosure agreement.

The settlement involving Johnny Anderson, an ex-aide to Gov. John Bel Edwards, included a non-disparagement clause.

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