On May 21st Sunlight Foundation announced the specific steps we would take to prevent harassment and abuse in the workplace and build a genuinely inclusive and respectful working culture.
We write to provide an update on the progress we have made.
First, we realized that to provide the full extent of the confidentiality protections we wanted to offer to any volunteers who are taking part in our audit, we needed to retain a lawyer. At the same time, it was vital that we retain someone who approached these issues with the understanding, nuance, experience, and values that aligned with our goals of accountability and inclusivity. We retained Katherine Kimpel because of her background fighting for women’s rights and civil rights and who teaches the enforcement of antidiscrimination laws at Yale Law School. In order to accommodate the schedules of the participants, the period for interviews was extended, and we anticipate Ms. Kimpel’s work on the external stakeholder and board governance review will conclude by the end of October. We plan on reporting out on that in early November.
Second, we hired Ms. Kimpel and her partner Elizabeth Brown Riordan through their consulting group Ramona Strategies to assist us in reviewing, updating, and/or developing of the best policies and practices we can to ensure that the working environment is fair, equitable, and designed to support each employee in realizing their full potential. In addition, they are going to design and deliver a new sex harassment training that is specifically tailored for our organization. After they advised that their work on these efforts should be informed by the audit, we agreed that these updates would roll out after the conclusion of the audit – meaning that the current staff at Sunlight will see these changes in late 2018 and early 2019.
Thank you for your continued investment in our collective mission, in this organization, and in our work to build a better Sunlight Foundation.
Board Member of The Sunlight Foundation