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New York Lawmakers Mull Protection Bill For Hotel Workers

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Dominique Strauss-Kahn (credit: Getty Images)

Dominique Strauss-Kahn (credit: Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Following the indictment of former International Monetary Fund managing director Dominique Strauss-Khan, Albany lawmakers were considering a bill requiring better protections for hotel employees.

The legislation would not only require hotels to provide sexual harassment training, but would provide a clear system for reporting episodes of it.

“The bill protects people from retaliation if they do complain to their supervisors,” said Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal of the Upper West Side, who introduced the bill. “You don’t have to take this kind of behavior. It’s illegal.”

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond reports

Rosenthal attributes the cases involving Strauss-Khan, and Egyptian businessman Mahmoud Abdel-Salam Omar, who was arraigned on charges he sexually abused a housekeeper at the Pierre Hotel, as encouraging hotel workers to speak out.

“These two incidents have emboldened workers to say this kind of stuff happens to me all the time and I want it to stop,” she said. “As long as customers’ behavior remains unpredictable, which I think it will never change, we need to have coping mechanisms and protections for employees.”

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