DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — Dubuque officials are working to update the city’s 27-year-old sexual harassment policy.
The policy, which was last updated in the early 1990s, is being reviewed following the resignation of former Dubuque Fire Department Capt. Jim Abitz, the Telegraph Herald reported .
Abitz had been accused of making inappropriate comments to an intern for the city.
Dubuque City Council Member Kate Larson said she learned in May that the city hadn’t updated its sexual harassment policy since the early 1990s.
“I was stunned to learn that our policy hasn’t been updated in so long,” Larson said. “Things have changed so much in those years.”
She noted that current policy doesn’t mention electronic forms of sexual harassment, which weren’t prevalent in 1991.
“It doesn’t cover digital communications at all,” Larson said. “We need to get it updated for the safety of our employees.”
The sexual harassment policy and several other administrative policies are being reviewed this year, said Randy Peck, personnel manager for the city.
He said officials have reviewed the policy periodically in the past and had determined that it didn’t need to be updated.
A study by the newspaper of area communities in Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois shows Dubuque stands in stark contrast to several of its neighbors. Of the 10 communities surveyed, Dubuque has the oldest policy.
Leaders in most communities said they had updated their policies within the past three years.
Information from: Telegraph Herald, http://www.thonline.com