OPM: Guidance For Agency-Specific Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking Policies

Posted: 12:30 am ET
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Via OPM:

One in 5 women and 1 in 71 men have been raped at some point in their lifetimes, and nearly 1.3 million women in the U.S. are raped every year. The statistics are sobering – even more so with our understanding that these types of crimes are often the most underreported. It is important to note that victims may experience one of these forms of violence or all three at the same time. Although women are the majority of victims, as the above statistics show, men can also become victims. In addition, these crimes affect people of all backgrounds, including race, income, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, etc.

Sexual Assault

Sexual assault refers to a range of behaviors, including but not limited to, a completed nonconsensual sex act (e.g., rape, sodomy, child molestation), an attempted nonconsensual sex act, and/or abusive sexual contact. Sexual assault includes any sexual act or behavior that is perpetrated when someone does not or cannot consent. A victim of sexual assault may know the perpetrator, such as a co-worker or a supervisor, and/or may be involved in a dating or marital relationship with the perpetrator, or the perpetrator may be unknown to the victim. Lack of consent should be inferred when a perpetrator uses force, harassment, threat of force, threat of adverse personnel or disciplinary action, or other coercion, or when the victim is asleep, incapacitated, unconscious, or physically or legally incapable of consent.

Below is an excerpt from OPM’s guidance for agency-specific domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking policies:

Domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking have the potential to affect every Federal workplace across the United States. It is the policy of the Federal Government to promote the health and safety of its employees by acting to prevent domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking within the workplace and by providing support and assistance to Federal employees whose working lives are affected by such violence.

This Guidance for Agency-Specific Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking Policies provides agencies with direction to enable them to fulfill the goals identified in the Presidential Memorandum on “Establishing Policies for Addressing Domestic Violence in the Federal Workforce,” which was issued on April 18, 2012. As the nation’s largest employer, the Federal Government should act as a model in responding to the effects of domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking in the workplace. Some agencies have already taken steps to address these issues. By building on these efforts, the Federal Government can further address the effects of domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking on its workforce, promoting the health and safety of its employees and improving the quality of its service to the public.

Read more below:

The State Department does not/does not have a published sexual assault or stalking policies.  Browsing state.gov shows that the State Department does asks: What is the United States’ Role in Addressing Sexual Violence in Libya and Syria? Also this: Evaluation of Implementation of the United States Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally, August 2012 to August 2015. And many more reports related to sexual assault and gender violence elsewhere.

But.

It does not have a published sexual assault and stalking policies for its employees/family members that are publicly available.

An FSO who is sexually assaulted has no easy way to determine the reporting process.  And if a family member not employed at post is assaulted, he/she does not have access to the State Department intranet. Whatever Diplomatic Security cable guidance reside behind the firewall (we’re looking for three cables), their contents could also be useless to sexual assault victims who have no state.gov accounts. So some questions:

  • Was an analysis of the agency’s current ability to handle incidents related to domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking in its workforce ever conducted as called for by the OPM guidance (see below)? What does this ability look like within an agency with over 275 locations worldwide?
  • OPM called for reporting procedures that provide an effective, confidential, and accessible way for employees to report incidents and concerns. Because the credibility of any reporting procedure will depend on the extent to which reports are handled quickly and efficiently, agency staff responsible for responding to reported incidents should be trained and prepared to handle any such reports. OPM says that agencies should recognize and respect a victim’s right to privacy and the need for confidentiality and autonomy.  According to OPM, the agency should make every effort to provide advance notice to the employee who disclosed information about the fact that the information will be disclosed, with whom it will be disclosed, and why. The agency should also provide the employee with the names and titles of the people with whom the agency intends to share the employee’s statements and should explain the necessity and purpose of that disclosure. What kind of procedure exists at the State Department? What level of confidentiality is extended to sexual assault victims?
  • OPM said that agencies should develop plans that specify which offices will generally respond to different types of incidents and who will be responsible for different aspects of incident responses.  Which offices at State are tasked to do this?
  • What types of workplace flexibilities are available to an employee when the employee and/or the employee’s family member(s) are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking?
  • What does the State Department do with employees who are perpetrators and employees who are victims? Since the Office of Special Investigations receives and catalogues allegations and complaints but neither categorized them by location nor by alleged offense, who actually knows how many sexual assaults and domestic violence have occurred in the Foreign Service?

Click here to see the State Department’s Sexual Harassment Policy via the Office of Civil Rights.

For domestic violence, see 3 FAM 1810 | FAMILY ADVOCACY PROGRAM (Child Abuse, Child Neglect, Domestic Violence).

Nada for sexual assault.

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Former @StateDept Sr. Official Sentenced to 32 Months For Voyeurism and Stalking Charges

Posted: 3:20 am EDT
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We previously blogged about Daniel Rosen, a former State/CT official who was arrested earlier this year (see State Dept’s Counterterrorism Official Arrested For Allegedly Soliciting Minor Online;  Daniel Rosen, State Dept Official Pleads Guilty to Stalking and Voyeurism Charges).

Last week, Rosen was sentenced to 11 years in jail but the judge suspended all but 32 months of the time on the condition that he successfully complete five years of probation upon his release from jail. Below is the announcement from DOJ:

Via USDOJ

WASHINGTON – Daniel Rosen, 45 of Washington D.C., was sentenced today to 32 months of incarceration on charges stemming from a series of incidents between 2012 and 2014 in which he secretly took video recordings of women in various stages of undress by aiming his cellular phone through their apartment windows in Northwest Washington.

The sentencing was announced by U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips and Cathy L. Lanier, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).

Rosen, a former senior official of the U.S. State Department, pled guilty on July 29, 2015, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, to six counts of voyeurism and five counts of stalking. He was sentenced by the Honorable Rhonda Reid Winston to a total of 11 years in jail. The judge suspended all but 32 months of the time on the condition that he successfully complete five years of probation upon his release from jail.

“Daniel Rosen trawled city neighborhoods in the late-night hours, sneaking into alleys and aiming his camera into the windows of women who had no idea they were being recorded,” said U.S. Attorney Phillips. “This sexual exploitation and invasion of privacy took place over a period of years and shattered the victims’ sense of safety and security. This sentence holds him accountable for the harm he caused to so many women and hopefully will deter others from similar conduct.”

According to a factual proffer submitted at the plea hearing, over the course of a three-year period, Rosen purposefully positioned himself outside of the windows of women who resided in basement-level apartments that faced rear, isolated alleys. The women believed they were shielded from outside view by the use of curtains, blinds, or the fact that their windows were situated in enclosed, hard-to-access to areas, either behind fences, through back residential alleys, or down a flight of basement steps. Once positioned behind these women’s apartments, Rosen peered through their windows and used his iPhone to record them. The activities took place in the areas of Mount Pleasant, the U Street Corridor, and Adams Morgan.

Rosen recorded the women in various stages of undress, capturing some in the most intimate and private moments in their bedrooms and bathrooms.  Several women had their blinds or curtains drawn, but Rosen was able to maneuver himself and his cell phone in between the cracks or small openings of the blinds to make his recordings.

All of the recordings took place during the late evening hours, thus enabling Rosen to hide in the shadows as he recorded these women in their lit bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and living rooms. At times, Rosen would engage in this conduct while walking his dog, thus disguising his true intentions. None of the women were aware that Rosen was watching and recording them, and none gave Rosen permission to watch and record them.  For several of these women, the defendant returned on more than one occasion to record their private moments.

Click here for WUSA9 coverage.

The case against him for the alleged solicitation of a minor online is scheduled for January. We have so far been unable to find the court documents related to this case.

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Daniel Rosen, State Dept Official Pleads Guilty to Stalking and Voyeurism Charges

Posted: 1:31 am EDT
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In February 2015, we wrote about the arrest of a State/CT employee for alleged solicitation of a minor (see  State Dept’s Counterterrorism Official Arrested For Allegedly Soliciting Minor Online.

On March 16, WaPo reported that the same employee was arrested in the District and charged with taking videos of women through the windows of their homes.  According to the same report, Daniel Rosen’s security clearance had been revoked.  Before it was taken down, he indicated on his LinkedIn profile that he was the Director of Counterterrorism Plans, Programs and Policy at the State Department for over six years. As of February 25, the State Department telephone directly lists the Bureau of Counterterrorism’s Director for the Office of Programs and Policy located at 2509 as “vacant.”

On July 29, WUSA has the following update:

Daniel Rosen, 45, pleaded guilty to 11 charges of stalking and voyeurism on Wednesday in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia for incidents that happened between 2012 and 2014. According to law enforcement, he used his cell phone to record women in various stages of undress by aiming his cellular phone through their apartment windows in the areas of Mount Pleasant, the U Street Corridor, and Adams Morgan in Northwest D.C.
[…]
His attorney Bernard Grimm says Rosen is undergoing therapy and showed police the locations after they discovered the videos.

“Beyond shame, talk about a fall from grace here’s a guy who used to work at the State Department has a master’s degree and his life just spiraled out of control,” he said.

Rosen faces up to 11 years or a $11,000 fine when he is sentenced on October 9. Each of the counts of voyeurism and stalking carries a maximum penalty of one year and potential fines. He will be released and under home confinement, which will be very restricted, until his sentencing date.

WaPo citing an assistant U.S. attorney reports that Rosen’s filming stretched over a nearly three-year period, from early 2012 to late 2014, and that “he returned to some women’s homes as many as five times to film videos that, in some cases, lasted minutes.”

His case on soliciting a minor,  a separate charge,  continues in September.
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