Senator McGuire’s California College Sexual Harassment Disclosure Act Advances With Overwhelming Vote

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Sacramento — Between 2017 and 2021, 54 employees at CSU campuses were found to have committed violations of sexual misconduct and discrimination. The violations included requests for sex, unwanted touching and aggressive verbal harassment.

Those perpetrators have no place in the Golden State’s university system, which is why Senate Majority Leader Mike McGuire has introduced SB 791, the California College Sexual Harassment Disclosure Act. 

This bill has now overwhelmingly passed both the Senate Education and Judiciary Committees.

“The Sexual Harassment Disclosure Act is all about shining the light on dark and dangerous behavior, holding perpetrators accountable and ensuring the cycle of harassment and abuse on California’s college campuses is stopped in its tracks,” Senate Majority Leader Mike McGuire said. “That’s why we’ve introduced the Sexual Harassment Disclosure Act, which will ensure hiring committees stop the cycle of harassment and protect students and staff.”

The legislation will require applicants for administrative or academic positions disclose any final administrative or judicial decision determining they (the applicant) committed sexual harassment. That information would then be turned over to a hiring committee at a California community college and or Cal State University, ensuring the cycle of harassment and abuse can be stopped in its tracks.

While Title IX protections exist to protect students, faculty and staff, bad actors have been able to escape the consequences of their actions by moving from one campus to the next.  

Here in California, we’re supposed to defend victims, advance a no tolerance approach to harassment and hold aggressors accountable. But in too many cases over the past decades on CSU campuses, it’s been the exact opposite. A culture of looking the other way, victim shaming and attempting to cover up violations have been commonplace. SB 791 is an important step to ending the abuse, McGuire added.

The Disclosure Act will now move to the Senate Appropriations Committee.