Delaware bill would protect employees who file claims of harassment against employers

DELAWARE – Delaware workers who say they’ve been the victim of workplace misconduct or discrimination could soon have new protections thanks to a series of bills.

The bills aim to raise the caps on potential settlements that advocates say have stayed flat since being set by federal law in 1991.

The bills also help clarify the 300-day statute of limitations- making sure slow bookkeeping by the state can stop a claim from moving forward, with claims now being counted as being received on the date the complaints were sent.

Sponsor Senator Laura Sturgeon says the most important part of the bills is protection for workers who take internal records to court as evidence of harassment.

“This bill carves out exceptions to the criminal code around computer offenses,” she said adding “that law about computer crimes was never meant to be a shield to allow employers to get away with harassing or allowing harassment or discrimination to happen in the workplace.”

Senator Sturgeon says she received pushback on the bill over the higher prices employers would have to pay if claims were to move forward.

The bills currently remain in committee.