In the wake of sexual harassment charges involving several prominent members of Congress, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation in February to strengthen the anti-harassment laws that apply to Congress and Congressional employees.

Last week, the Senate finally followed the House’s lead and approved its own version of the legislation, increasing the likelihood that expanded anti-harassment protection for Congressional employees will soon become law – assuming the House and Senate can resolve some minor differences between their respective bills.

Because there are some components in the legislation that go beyond anti-harassment laws that apply in the private sector, these reforms, assuming they become law, are likely to influence the ongoing efforts by advocates to strengthen federal, state, and local anti-harassment laws that apply in the private sector. Among the most significant of these provisions is one that would make harassers personally liable for any sexual harassment award or settlement.

Members of the Center for Workplace Compliance (CWC) can read more here.