Someone Leaked Mike Bloomberg’s Campaign Team NDA and It’s Just as Terrible as You’d Expect
At Wednesday’s Democratic debate, Elizabeth Warren pressed Michael Bloomberg on the nondisclosure agreements he has had former female employees sign as part of harassment lawsuit settlements. Warren has been calling for Bloomberg to release those women from their NDAs for a while now, and she brought that argument to the stage in Nevada.
As it turns out, Bloomberg doesn’t just have questionable NDAs for his business; he also makes his campaign staff sign them.
I obtained a copy of the Bloomberg campaign’s strict NDA that it requires staffers to sign. It’s 9 pages long and could prevent employees from reporting workplace abuse:https://t.co/oVlL6nQDlf pic.twitter.com/yVZzsUO2W0
— Ken Klippenstein (@kenklippenstein) February 19, 2020
NDAs are not uncommon in politics or in the corporate world. In fact, they’re very common. Hell, Warren’s presidential campaign makes her staff sign them. But, according to a copy of a Warren campaign NDA posted online, there are some big differences between hers (and the kind of contract you’d hope exists in any of these offices) and Bloomberg’s.
To start, Warren’s is two and a half pages long. Bloomberg’s is NINE.
Warren’s explicitly says that “Confidential Information does not include claims of sexual harassment or sexual assault, or the underlying facts and circumstances related to such claims.”
Bloomberg’s does not. Moreover, it forbids employees from discussing “any and all non-public information” and “activities” by the campaign. It also includes a non-disparagement clause that, like the rest of the agreement, does not expire, even after the election is over.
The document was obtained by The Nation’s Ken Klippenstein, who writes that “the NDA is overly broad to the point of preventing sexual harassment, as well as other forms of workplace abuse like racial discrimination, from being reported.”
Jordan Libowitz, spokesperson for the nonpartisan government ethics and accountability group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, found the NDA troubling. “The thing that jumped out at me was the non-disparagement clause, which the Trump campaign used in 2016,” Libowitz said. “That can have a chilling effect on people reporting abuses and speaking publicly about things like sexual harassment.”
“This is much longer and deeper than anything I’ve seen before and it raises some issues, not just this specifically but some of these more in-depth NDAs campaigns are using,” Libowitz added. “This seems like it’s written for some major corporation like Google trying to prevent people from going to Amazon. This seems pretty far outside the lines of how campaigns tend to act.”
Bloomberg is offering his staff an above-market-rate salary and ridiculous perks like free laptops and iPhones, but in addition to trading in your basic principles, this sure makes it seem like you’re having to give up a lot more in exchange for a place on that team.
(via The Nation)
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