Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (Position 8, Citywide), Chair of Council’s Housing, Health, Energy and Workers’ Rights Committee (HHEWR), together with her colleagues passed C.B. 119374 to create the Office of the Employee Ombud (OEO) during the Full Council meeting earlier today. The measure passed by a vote of 6-0 and Mosqueda issued the following statement in response:
“The creation of the Office of Employee Ombud (OEO) is one step towards truly building a safe and inclusive work environment for each one of our employees. I’m grateful for the comprehensive work of the Anti-Harassment Interdepartmental Team (AH-IDT), labor unions, and Silence Breakers in helping shape this piece of legislation.
“With the #MeToo movement we have heard story after story about inappropriate behavior, especially towards women and people of color that has been hidden and even tolerated. With the Office of the Employee Ombud in place, employees will now have an avenue where they can share their experience and learn about all of their options, next steps, and emotional support if needed. The OEO will also help us identify root causes for hostile work environment and provide us with recommendations on how to address and prevent workplace discrimination, harassment and intimidation.
“Today we celebrate. But this legislation only addresses some of the recommendations from the AH-IDT, so tomorrow, we roll up our sleeves and get back to work to improve our anti-harassment and anti-discrimination policies and procedures, training, investigation, reporting and cultural shifts.”