RICAGV Press Release

The Rhode Island Coalition Against Gun Violence Condemns Speaker Mattiello For Deficient Response to Sexual Harassment Complaints

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 30, 2018

CONTACT: Kat Kerwin, Director of Communications

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Providence, Rhode Island October 30, 2018 – The Rhode Island Coalition Against Gun Violence (RICAGV) condemns in the strongest possible terms Speaker Nicholas Mattiello’s incompetent and deficient response to the very serious complaints of sexual harassment from Representative Katherine Kazarian against House Judiciary Chair Cale Keable. We support Representative Kazarian and all victims of sexual harassment, of which there have been too many in the Rhode Island State House under Mattiello’s leadership.

Speaker Mattiello has allowed a culture of harassment and intimidation against female lawmakers to flourish, creating an environment in which they are expected to remain silent in the face of persistent harassment, or face retribution in the form of having their bills killed by leadership. According to reporting from WPRI 12 after Speaker Mattiello had been informed of Representative Keable’s inappropriate behavior, not only did he not punish him, but he advocated promoting him to the role of Majority Leader.

The RICAGV stands with Representative Kazarian and the other female lawmakers who have fought to change the culture of harassment and intimidation that has characterized Mattiello’s Speakership.

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