In recent years, several female CIA employees have complained about sexual harassment at the workplace, as well as the lack of proper investigation of these incidents within the agency, writes Politico. Against the backdrop of these allegations, the CIA announced the appointment of an expert on the prevention of harassment, and created a special working group.
The CIA is hiring a sexual harassment prevention expert and announcing a number of other measures in an effort to respond to allegations of harassment and other forms of inappropriate behavior by its employees, Politico reports. That expert will be psychologist Talitha Jackson, who previously held a similar position in the U.S. Navy.
In recent years, several female employees of the CIA said that their incidents of sexual harassment in the workplace were not properly investigated, the publication writes. This year, these female employees appeared before Congress, where they said that CIA management discouraged them from filing harassment complaints and made it difficult for them to access law enforcement.
That speech led Congress to initiate its own investigation, which also included the CIA’s inspector general, Politico writes. A task force was also created within the CIA to look at ways to improve the organizational structure to ensure that employees could report harassment in the workplace. As Politico notes, one of the team’s tasks will be to reform the CIA’s equal opportunity division: according to victims’ testimony, it was the division that dissuaded them from filing complaints.
“It has now become apparent that we need to change our approaches. According to the feedback I’m getting, the current approaches aren’t working,” one CIA official who wishes to remain anonymous was quoted as saying.