You too, SEIU?

Posted by Olivia Grady on Wednesday, November 1st, 2017 at 4:30 pm - Permalink

Sexual harassment pervades union

On October 23, 2017, Scott Courtney resigned as executive vice president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). The resignation came after SEIU President Mary Kay Henry suspended him following an investigation about possible nepotism and sexual misconduct by Courtney.

SEIU spokeswoman Sahar Wali said:

"This comes a week after she suspended him from his assigned duties based on preliminary information that surfaced through an internal investigation launched to look into questions about to potential violations of our union's anti-nepotism policy, efforts to evade our Code of Ethics and subsequent complaints related to sexual misconduct and abusive behavior towards union staff."

In addition, another staff member was fired, while one staff member was placed on administrative leave.

According to Bloomberg News and Buzzfeed News, seven current and former staff members claimed that Courtney had dated multiple women in his office and even promoted some based on those relationships. He also failed to act on sexual harassment complaints.

When he resigned, Courtney was currently on his honeymoon after marrying a union staff member.

As executive vice president, Courtney was a leader in the SEIU’s “Fight for 15,” the labor union’s effort to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Ironically, according to the Fight for 15 website, their supporters are also striking because they are “sexually harassed while working and management does nothing about it, even when [they] report the harassment.”

Interestingly, the SEIU is one of the largest unions and is particularly vocal on politics. The union spent almost $40 million during the 2016 Presidential election, and on November 17, 2015, the SEIU endorsed Hilary Clinton for President. It spent less than $5,000 on Republican candidates.

After the accounts of fraud and unfair labor practices, sexual harassment comes as no surprise.