The Latest: Gov. Edwards’ office: Harassment inquiry ongoing
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The Latest on a state senator’s request for a review of government policies involving sexual harassment allegations (all times local):
Gov. John Bel Edwards’ office says an investigation is ongoing into sexual harassment allegations against a top aide who resigned after the accusations were made.
Edwards Chief of Staff Mark Cooper said Wednesday the administration takes the claims seriously against Johnny Anderson, who left his job last week as deputy chief of staff. Cooper said: “Sexual harassment in state government will not be tolerated.”
Cooper’s statement came after Republican Sen. Sharon Hewitt, of Slidell, asked the legislative auditor to review state government policies for handling sexual misconduct allegations. Hewitt questioned how Anderson was hired after he was accused of sexual harassment in 2006 when he worked for then-Gov. Kathleen Blanco.
Anderson has denied wrongdoing in both sets of accusations.
Cooper says the administration’s investigation will include a review of policies regarding sexual harassment across state government.
A Louisiana state senator wants a review of state government hiring practices and policies for handling sexual misconduct allegations after a top aide to Gov. John Bel Edwards resigned following harassment accusations.
Republican Sen. Sharon Hewitt is asking the legislative auditor to compare Louisiana’s policies for handling allegations to other states and recommend ways to strengthen procedures. She wants a tally of how much Louisiana agencies spent on sexual harassment settlements over five years.
Hewitt’s request, released Wednesday, comes a week after Johnny Anderson left his job as the Democratic governor’s deputy chief of staff, after being accused of sexual harassment.
Anderson denies wrongdoing.
Hewitt questioned how Anderson was hired after he was accused of sexual harassment in 2006 when he worked for then-Gov. Kathleen Blanco. Anderson maintained his innocence.