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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A handful of new, individual state regulations has resulted in mandatory sexual harassment training for 20% of the workers in the U.S., Bloomberg reports.

Context: That means 1 in 5 workers are now offered such education, as opposed to 1 in 100 as of 2 years ago, Bloomberg adds.

Why it matters: The #MeToo movement got off the ground roughly 2 years ago and spurred unprecedented misconduct reporting in Hollywood and in the media, as well as by other workers who withstood harassment in their workplaces.

Driving the news: This week, New York state passed a law requiring organizations to teach employees about harassment and simplify the process to file and track complaints.

Meanwhile, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Washington and Illinois passed or revamped laws over the past 2 years to expand training options.

  • Tech and media companies, including Google, as well as political offices continue to grapple with public demand to improve the process around sexual harassment.
  • Recently, individual states have passed a variety of laws limiting forced arbitration, nondisclosure agreements and other policies that could discourage employees from reporting harassment, Bloomberg notes.

Many companies already provided materials for sexual harassment training, but a 2015 Equal Employment Opportunity Commission task force found that the training largely existed to protect employers from lawsuits instead of teaching people how to spot and report bad behavior.

Background: Workplace sexual harassment was deemed illegal in a 1986 Supreme Court ruling.

  • Two court rulings in the late '80s set a precedent that a business could defend itself against some sexual harassment claims, as long as that organization had a stated and enforceable policy against the practice.

But, but, but: Three-quarters of incidents still go unreported, government data estimates. And more than a third of American workers said they believe their workplace fosters sexual misconduct, per a 2019 survey from the Society for Human Resource Management.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 4 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus deaths reach 4,000 per day as hospitals remain in crisis mode — America has tuned out the coronavirus at the peak of its destruction — 1 in 3 people in L.A. County believed to have been infected with coronavirus.
  2. Politics: Biden taps ex-FDA chief to lead Operation Warp Speed amid rollout of COVID plan— Widow of GOP congressman-elect who died of COVID-19 will run to fill his seat — Joe Biden will seek nearly $2 trillion in COVID relief spending.
  3. Vaccine: Battling Black mistrust of the vaccines"Pharmacy deserts" could become vaccine deserts — Instacart to give $25 to shoppers who get vaccine.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode againFed chair: No interest rate hike coming any time soon —  Inflation rose more than expected in December.
  5. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.
Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
1 hour ago - Economy & Business

Trump blocks banks from limiting loans to gun and oil companies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Big banks are no longer allowed to reject business loan applicants because of the industry in which they operate, according to a new rule finalized on Thursday by the Trump administration.

Why it matters: Wall Street has curtailed its exposure to industries like guns, oil and private prisons, driven by both public and shareholder pressures. This new rule could reverse that trend.

Former FDA commissioner: "Reliable drug supply is absolutely critical"

Axios' Caitlin Owens and former FDA commissioner Mark McClellan. Photo courtesy of Axios Events

Having a reliable supply of pharmaceutical drugs throughout America will be "absolutely critical" to boosting affordability in health care during the Biden administration, former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner Mark McClellan said at a virtual Axios Event on Friday.

The big picture: McClellan, who served under President George W. Bush, says drugs having limited supply and limited competition leads to elevated pricing. He considers drug supply to be a national security and public health issue.