Free legal advice for victims of workplace harassment

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New York State has announced a hotline for people to report workplace sexual harassment.

The Confidential Hotline: 1-800-HARASS-3 (1-800-427-2773) is to be operated by the New York State Division of Human Rights and will connect workers who allege harassment with experienced pro bono lawyers to give them advice. .

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New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced the program to provide legal aid to victims in what can be very sensitive situations, as her own administration arose from sexual harassment allegations against her predecessor, the former governor Andrew Cuomo.

Cuomo resigned a year ago after several women came forward and claimed inappropriate interaction with the powerful Democrat. Cuomo denied all allegations and was never prosecuted on criminal charges due to a lack of supporting evidence prosecutors said.

Hochul said New York is taking steps to “make the workplace safer, more respectful and more collaborative.”

In March, the Buffalo-area Democrat signed legislation directing the Division of Human Rights to establish a confidential hotline. The measure was also touted as a step toward strengthening protections against retaliation for victims of discrimination. In the wake of the Cuomo scandal, the administration has said it wants to ensure that all public employers are subject to human rights law.

The governor’s office says the Human Rights Division has worked with National Labor Lawyers of New York, the New York State Bar Association and other bar associations to recruit pro attorneys. bono to participate in the program.

Hochul’s office says New York is the first state in the nation to enact a human rights law.

Those interested in filing a complaint can visit the HRD website at https://dhr.ny.gov

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