“I felt very insecure,” Ms. Spottiswood said. “I was very afraid for my life and my well-being.”
Affinity spokeswoman Natalie Cerny said in a statement Tuesday that the company investigated Ms Spottiswood’s allegations “with independent counsel and concluded that the arbitration award she referred to was wrong.”
Ms. Zia Chishti said he strongly opposes all the accusations against him.
The legislation, introduced by Representative Sherry Bustos, D-Illinois, and Morgan Griffith, D-Va., has bipartisan support and ends forced arbitration of survivors of sexual assault and sexual harassment.
The Senate Judiciary Committee recently passed a similar version of the bill. The House committee is scheduled to vote on the legislation on Wednesday. If passed, it would be put before the House of Representatives for a full vote.
Sarah Parshall Berry, legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think-tank, testified against the legislation, saying that arbitration should not be confused with confidentiality clauses. She said that under federal law, employees are allowed to disclose what happened in arbitration hearings, to report what happened and to raise their complaints to other public bodies.
And she warned that the legislation could force more cases into the federal courts and lead to longer and more costly legal proceedings that won’t benefit employees or hold “bad actors” accountable.
“The premise of this session, that arbitration keeps victims of sexual violence and harassment in the shadows, suggests a solution to the ultimately misguided problem of harassment and discrimination,” said Ms. Parshall Perry. “Restricting access to arbitration would, in the end, harm the people Congress has sought to protect for nearly a century.”