Metro Council members work to draft harassment policy

Community members call for Johnson's removal from Metro Council

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – A letter with more than 90 names attached to it calls for the immediate removal of Metro Councilman Dan Johnson pending the outcome of an investigation of sexual harassment which is alleged by Councilwoman Jessica Green.

Green says Johnson grabbed her rear-end at a public event at Wyandotte Park earlier this month.  Johnson has represented South Louisville since 1992 and his current part-time salary at Metro Council is nearly $47,000 a year.  Green and others are working on a Metro Council anti-harassment policy and appreciates the renewed call for Johnson's ouster.

"It requires us fostering an environment where people should feel safe and so it's something; I appreciated the gesture immensely," she said.

Currently, Metro Council members and their staffs don't have a harassment policy or procedures to report it.  Under the proposed plan, an anonymous tip-line would be created to field calls. 

A third party investigator, who has not been named, would vet any allegations.  Green, who doesn't regret her case from going public, hopes any legislation includes a level of privacy. 

"I do hope that moving forward we are able to craft a policy that protects the privacy of victims of sexual assault that provides everyone due process who's accused.

No action was taken at Tuesday's workshop. Johnson is not a part of the meetings, but there was some discussion about the timeline in which an investigation should take place and the consequences should an allegation prove valid. 

Those recommendations will be given to council members next month.

"Any council member that can walk these halls terrorizing anybody, that's unacceptable and we got to make sure our policy covers that," Green told WHAS11.

The letter does not carry any legal weight.  State law does not allow for the council president to remove any elected council member.

The work group will meet again in two weeks to finish drafting the anti-harassment resolution.  Green's goal is to have it before the entire council on July 18.

 

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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