Judiciary Started Addressing Workplace Misconduct, Roberts Says

Jan. 1, 2019, 1:12 AM

Chief Justice John Roberts said the federal judiciary has begun putting measures in place to address sexual harassment and other forms of workplace misconduct in U.S. courthouses.

Issuing his year-end report Monday, Roberts said officials have started implementing the recommendations of a panel he appointed to examine the judiciary’s workplace conduct policies. Roberts set up the group in 2017 amid misconduct allegations against Alex Kozinski, a now-retired federal appeals court judge in California.

Roberts said the judiciary’s administrative body has created a special office to deal with the subject. The Official of Judicial Integrity will serve as a national clearinghouse and provide employees with “an independent source for confidential guidance and counseling,” Roberts wrote.

He said officials have also developed new video training for judges and law clerks to cover workplace rights and responsibilities.

Roberts said other recommendations of the working group will require changes to the judiciary’s codes of conduct and disciplinary procedures. Those proposals will require action by the Judicial Conference, the judiciary’s policymaking arm, Roberts wrote.

The working group found in a report released in June that inappropriate workplace conduct is “not pervasive” in the judiciary but also “not limited to a few isolated instances.“

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To contact the reporter on this story: Greg Stohr in Washington at gstohr@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Joe Sobczyk at jsobczyk@bloomberg.net Laurie Asséo

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