JEFFERSON CITY, MO (KDKZ-TV) Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley is partnering with the Women’s Foundation to combat harassment and discrimination in state agencies.

Hawley told reporters that the state paid more than $8 million for claims under the Missouri Human Rights Act in 2017. He says that shows there’s a culture of harassment and discrimination in state government that needs to be fixed.

Hawley says good policies should include ways for victims to submit anonymous complaints and checks to prevent retaliation.

The office also is looking for clear and specific consequences for committing harassment or discrimination and policies to protect interns. The attorney general’s office worked with Kansas City-based Women’s Foundation to develop the model policies. These policies draw on the Women’s Foundation’s past experience advising government entities on discrimination and sexual harassment best practices.

Most recently, the Women’s Foundation worked closely with the Kansas Legislature to enact strengthened sexual harassment policies.

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