Fighting for Florida

“Last night I terminated the employment of my Chief of Staff after personally receiving a complaint about his conduct, and thereafter coming into possession of clear and irrefutable evidence of workplace misconduct and harassment. It was the express wish of those injured in this matter to remain anonymous and to not have any details publicly released which could result in their identities being revealed. I have honored these requests to the best of my ability.  If at any time in the future they decide to come forward publicly they will have my full support, cooperation and assistance.  

“The overwhelming majority of media outlets have responsibly respected our decision to honor this request. They understand that it would be morally wrong to cause further injury to those victimized in this matter by ignoring their wishes. Sadly, at least one media outlet, the Miami Herald, does not share this view. 

“On Sunday, they published an article which calls into question the validity of what they erroneously describe as a ‘hasty’ investigation, and cynically imply that by honoring the specific request of the victims we are withholding information they are entitled to. It appears their desire to obtain as many salacious details as possible in order to publish a story that generates traffic for their website has blinded them to the fact that reporting harassment is a very difficult decision for many victims. This is especially true for those employed in government, who too often prefer to not come forward in order to avoid having their stories reported in the press and becoming a permanent result of any internet searches about them.  

“No matter how many articles of this kind they choose to publish, they will never pressure me to violate the trust the victims have placed in me. Not only is this the right thing to do in this particular case, if victims of harassment come to believe that they cannot report harassment without having their identities revealed, it may discourage those who do not want to be publicly identified from reporting cases of harassment in the future.”