NY Legislature holds landmark sexual harassment hearing

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Sexual harassment victims are urging New York lawmakers to do more to address the problem during a legislative hearing that supporters say is decades overdue.

Lawmakers say Wednesday’s hearing in Albany was the first hearing focused on harassment in nearly 30 years.

Female lawmakers had demanded the hearing, a request granted after Democrats won control of the state Senate last fall.

Harassment has been a particular problem in state government, where legislative staffers say they faced retaliation for stepping forward.

Democratic Sen. Alessandra Biaggi, of the Bronx, says victim accounts will help lawmakers craft tougher anti-harassment policies for both the public and private sector.

Lawmakers last year approved new anti-harassment policies for government workers and required private employers to adopt policies. Critics noted that women lawmakers weren’t involved in writing those rules.