Anti-Harassment Interdepartmental Team

In January 2018, Mayor Jenny Durkan announced the creation of an Anti-Harassment Interdepartmental Team (IDT) to study the City’s response to and prevention of workplace discrimination, harassment, and other forms of misconduct. The IDT was charged with providing recommendations to the Mayor in the areas of policy, reporting, and training.

The 21-person team was carefully and intentionally selected to include representation from various City groups including: The Seattle Silence Breakers, the Coalition of Affinity Groups Against Racial Harassment, Mayor’s Office, City Council, and City Attorney’s Office representatives, labor partners, Race and Social Justice Initiative (RSJI) Change Teams, and Race and Social Justice (RSJ) Affiliates. The resulting membership reflects diversity of age, gender and race. Departments represented range from large utilities, to smaller offices, to non-executive departments.

As a part of an initial review, the IDT collected and reviewed City of Seattle Personnel Rules, department policies, other municipal County and City policies, and surveyed data to assess past experiences and current processes, identify gaps and disparities, and to determine barriers to reporting harassment and discrimination at the City.  

The resulting Anti-Harassment IDT Recommendations focused on addressing and preventing workplace discrimination and harassment by providing strategic recommendations in the following categories:

  • Continued Work
  • Commitment & Accountability
  • Policy
  • Reporting
  • Training 
  • Areas for Further Review and Consideration.

The recommendations are grounded with a deliberate foundation of racial equity and social justice.

The recommendations are designed to enable greater accountability, culture change, reframing, resourcing, and systemic change. They are a necessary starting place for the City’s work. In September 2018, Mayor Jenny Durkan signed an Executive Order to establish the parameters for engaging in this work with a goal of setting a welcoming, inclusive, and safe work environment, where everyone can do their best work. The Mayor’s Executive Order was informed by the IDT’s recommendations. The Anti-harassment Interdepartmental Team now provides continued oversight and helps ensure that the policies the Executive Order established are implemented Citywide.  

Native Women Singing in City Hall