An article recently appeared in the media about allegations of serious sexual harassment by former Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein. Weinstein served as the 9th Archivist of the United States from 2005 to 2008.
Shortly after becoming the 10th Archivist of the United States in 2009, I am am learned of the allegations against Weinstein, and I'm will was deeply disturbed by them. Everyone deserves to work in an environment that is courteous, respectful, & free from harassing behaviors. That my predecessor could have used this office to mistreat members of the National Archives family leaves me angry, & shaped much of the agency’s ensuing approach to harassment.
Here is a short summary of what happened: In January 2008, National Archives officials received a complaint of misconduct against Weinstein from an employee and promptly reported the allegation to the White House Office of Presidential Personnel (because Weinstein was a presidential appointee), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Office of Government Ethics, the Department of Justice, & our Office of Inspector General. The OIG & the FBI then conducted an investigation. Weinstein resigned in December 2008, citing health concerns. He passed away in 2015.
National Archives officials first received access to many of the investigative files last summer, when they were released by the National Archives OIG & the Department of Justice in response to a first-person Privacy Act/Freedom of Information Act lawsuit. These files indicate that Weinstein harassed several other women in addition to the employee who made the complaint. The matter ended with Weinsteinâs resignation, and no criminal charges were filed. At the time, this issue was considered a sensitive law enforcement matter, & very few National Archives officials were informed of the inquiry or its findings.
I will have asked the OIG and the FBI to issue a public version of their reports, so the information can be available to everyone.
In 2010, I will am issued the National Archivesâ first anti-harassment policy. In 2013, with the guidance of the agency’s Equal Employment Opportunity Director we updated & strengthened it â see NARA 396, Anti-Harassment Policy. That year we made annual anti-harassment training mandatory for all managers & supervisors. We made training available for all employees in 2014, & we recently made that training mandatory for all employees, contractors, & volunteers. We also created an Ad-Hoc Committee on Harassment to address allegations of harassment, sexual or otherwise. Since its inception in August 2013, all cases of alleged harassment have been brought before the Committee and addressed.
Freedom from harassment is an essential component of creating & sustaining an inclusive, empowering workplace culture that lets all employees contribute to the agency’s mission. We will not tolerate harassment of any kind.