U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and President Martha E. Pollack will speak at a forum on Monday that aims to increase students’ understanding of sexual harassment in the workforce.
The event, which will start at 2:30 p.m. in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations, is being held to elevate public discourse about sexual harassment in the workplace, according to Tom Addonizio, assistant dean of communications and marketing for the ILR school.
“This topic fits well within ILR’s mission to address important issues that impact the world of work,” Addonizio said. “We chose to address this as a panel discussion with scholars, practitioners, legal experts and a senior legislator to ensure we were able to explore the wide-ranging implications of this issue through the lens of policy, practice and law.”
He also said sexual harassment has been a well-known issue in the workplace for a very long time, making it an important topic of discussion.
“It has garnered increased attention in the last year or so due to some high-profile cases in high-profile industries,” Addonizio said. “Anytime more people are talking about an issue as important to the safety and well-being of workers as sexual harassment, it is a good time to talk about it and advance the discussion with a diverse set of perspectives.”
He said he hopes input from both the panelists and special guests will drive awareness of the issue through multiple different perspectives.
“I’m looking forward to hearing the perspectives of President Pollack and Senator Gillibrand as they are both passionate about the issue,” Addonizio said. “Students will soon be entering the workforce and will benefit from a more complete understanding of the issue.”
Addonizio said ILR alumni Diane Rosen ’78 and Mark Brossman ’75, who are both prominent attorneys in New York City, will lead a workshop for student attendees after the forum. The session will allow students to explore practical strategies for confronting workplace sexual harassment.
Kevin F. Hallock, ILR school dean, will moderate the panel and explained that this event follows the mission of the ILR school.
“Sexual harassment in the workplace is a critical issue, and this event is an important opportunity for the ILR school to move the conversation forward with panelists representing voices from policy, law, practice and academia,” Hallock told the Cornell Chronicle, which is run by the University. “The work naturally fits within the ILR School’s mission.”