MANCHESTER, NH – Ten Manchester state legislators are among those who have not yet signed a form acknowledging they’ve read the official Statehouse 2016sexual harassment policy, according to an NHPR report.
The nine-page form, which defines sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal, physical, and nonphysical conduct of a sexual nature, and requires a dated signature acknowledging the form has been received and read.
Manchester representatives who have not yet signed the form according to NHPR, which compiled the list using the official House roster and indications that the sexual harassment policy form had been signed:
- Benjamin C. Baroody (D-District 43)
- Elizabeth Edwards (D-District11)
- Lisa M. Freeman (R-District 12)
- Jeffrey P. Goley (D-District 8)
- Christopher J. Herbert (D-District 43)
- Thomas Katsiantonis (D- District 15)
- Mark McLean (R-District 44)
- Kathleen F. Souza (R-District 43)
- Victoria L. Sullivan (R-District 16)
- Robert M. Walsh (R-District 11)
– Source: NHPR
On November 20, NHPR reported that New Hampshire House Speaker Shawn Jasper was, “disappointed that roughly one-quarter of his chamber has not signed.” They have received multiple reminders.
House Chief of Staff Terry Pfaff said all lawmakers are subject to the policy, even if they do not sign it. He said the House is working to provide training for legislators, staff, and possibly lobbyists. It will be mandatory for staff but not for legislators.
Manchester Representatives who signed the form include:
- Robert A. Backus (D-District 19)
- Amanda Bouldin (D-District 12)
- Jane E. Beaulieu (D-District 45)
- Patricia Cornell (D-District 18)
- Linda A. DiSilvestro (D-District 9)
- Joel Elber (D-District 19)
- Armand D. Forest (D-District 18)
- Mary C. Freitas (D-District 14)
- Larry G. Gagne (R-District 13)
- Mary Heath (D-District 14)
- Jean L. Jeudy (D-District10)
- Patrick T. Long (D-District 10)
- Mark S. MacKenzie (D-District 17)
- Jesse J. Martineau (D-District 42)
- Richard O’Leary (D-District 13)
- William J. O’Neil (D-District 9)
- Mark L. Proulx (R-District 44)
- Barbara E. Shaw (D-District 16)
- Timothy J. Smith (D-District 17)
- Daniel J. Sullivan (D-District 8)
- Connie Van Houten (D-District 45)
The House has a history of controversial sexism
Earlier this year, the legislature was rocked by a scandal about Rep. Robert Fisher (R-Laconia) who made sexist, derogatory statements toward women online. On May 17, the Legislative Administration Committeenarrowly voted to recommend no disciplinary action, but Fisher resigned a few hours later.
After an amendment by Rep. Victoria Sullivan (R-Manchester), the committee also considered Rep. Sherry Frost’s online postings criticizing men. It voted to take no action against her. During the Frost deliberations, “Profanity, finger-pointing and angry outbursts reigned,” according to the Concord Monitor .
In 2015, Rep. Amanda Bouldin ((D-Ward 12) objected to a bill, sponsored by men, that would make it illegal for a woman to expose her breasts. Her Facebook comments led to mockingresponses by Rep. Josh Moore (R-Merrimack) and Rep. Al Baldasaro (R-Londonderry).
The complete list detailing which NH legislators have signed/not signed the policy form published by NHPRcan be found here.
[Editor’s Note: The story has been updated to reflect that State Rep. Amanda Bouldin has signed the policy form.]