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The signees are looking to change what they call a pervasive culture of toxic masculinity in the campaign world.
More than two dozen women and men who worked on Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign are seeking a meeting with the senator and his top political advisers to “discuss the issue of sexual violence and harassment on the 2016 campaign, for the purpose of planning to mitigate the issue in the upcoming presidential cycle,” according to a copy of letter obtained by POLITICO.
Weeks - Conversation - Media - Texts - Person
“In recent weeks there has been an ongoing conversation on social media, in texts, and in person, about the untenable and dangerous dynamic that developed during our campaign,” they wrote.
Organizers of the effort said they did not intend for the letter to become public, but they confirmed that they sent it to senior Sanders officials on Sunday afternoon.
Friends - Bernie - Sanders - Senator - Campaign
Friends of Bernie Sanders, the senator's principal campaign committee, responded to the letter in a statement to POLITICO. "We thank the signers of the letter for their willingness to engage in this incredibly important discussion," the statement reads. "We always welcome hearing the experiences and views of our former staff. We also value their right to come to us in a private way so their confidences and privacy are respected. And we will honor this principle with respect to this private letter."
The committee also pointed to new policies implemented during the senator's 2018 reelection campaign that included creating a toll-free hotline run by a third party to report incidents and mandating training for all staff and volunteers.
Signees - Instances - Violence - Harassment - Campaign
The signees did not describe specific instances of “sexual violence and harassment” that occurred on the campaign. The statement circulated broadly over the past weekend among former staffers who added their names in support and was not specific to people who had experienced harassment or violence.
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