You can go back to our August podcast of Hitting Left when my brother and co-host Joanna Klonsky talked to Springfield whistle blower, Alaina Hampton.
A political consultant whose allegations of sexual harassment against a top aide to state House Speaker Mike Madigan put a harsh spotlight on the treatment of women in Illinois politics is launching her own support group for victims of “uncontrollable workplace situations.”
“Chicago Workplace Sexual Harassment | #MeToo Meetup is for anyone that has experienced sexual harassment, abuse, intimidation, or bullying in the workplace,” Alaina Hampton said in a statement. “The goal is to provide an empowering space for individuals that have fallen victim to uncontrollable workplace situations causing mental trauma and emotional distress.”
Hampton, a former political consultant to the powerful House speaker, came forward last February with allegations that another longtime Madigan aide, Kevin Quinn, harassed her with a stream of unwanted texts and phone calls in pursuit of a romantic and sexual relationship.
The early result of Hampton coming forward was that a few of the men close to the Speaker had to go.
Like Madigan’s chief of staff, Tim Mapes who resigned after another but similar case.
The personal cost to Hampton has been high. She told NPR:
“I’m a political consultant,” she said. “But ever since all of my story became public, it has been obviously very difficult to get work. I spent a lot of time last year traveling and taking care of my mental and emotional health. And now, with campaign season starting, I might do a little bit of political work again, but I also bartend.”
Besides the teachers union, Hampton claimed other politicians and organizations have been told not to work with her or expressed anxiety about working with her, because they feared Madigan forces would hit back if they hired her.
Meanwhile Hampton continues to challenge Springfield’s toxic #MeToo environment.