President-elect Joe Biden’s pick for the position of White House Office of Management and Budget, Neera Tanden, allegedly revealed the name of a sexual harassment victim during her nonprofit organization meeting.
Many people expect Tanden to have a controversial confirmation hearing, especially after her incident. She currently sits as the president and CEO of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress (CAP) based in Washington, D.C.
A 2018 report detailed a woman’s allegations of sexual harassment and retaliation. However, during a discussion with her organization, Tanden uttered the victim’s name that filed the claim.
A CAP employee who attended the meeting said there was only one thing that no one was allowed to do during the gathering, which is to out the victim. They added that Tanden spoke the woman’s name multiple times, which destroyed the remaining confidence of the system.
A spokesperson for CAP said Tanden’s outing of the victim was an accident and that Tanden apologized for saying the woman’s first name. But according to a report after the meeting, the official spoke the victim’s name twice in quick succession before realizing her mistake and apologizing.
Another attendee in the meeting supported the claims that the outing was unintentional. They said, “Neera genuinely seemed shaken and kept apologizing,” adding that many of the participants were surprised by the incident. The CAP spokesperson said everyone saw how horrified Tanden was during the meeting.
Many attendees at the gathering said that Tanden’s words, whether intentional or not, undermined the purpose of the meeting. They said they were there to create a sense of safety and security within the organization, Fox News reported.
The victim that Tanden outed left CAP in 2016 due to the amount of sexual harassment she had received. After filing complaints, the woman, who identified herself as “Mary,” was met with retaliation. Tanden allegedly used Mary’s real first name during the meeting when asked about the victim’s complaint.
One staffer said, “Honestly, it ruined the rest of the meeting like, how can we trust any of this now that you can’t even get that right?” They said the apology was as doubtful as to the purpose of the meeting. Another participant said that Tanden had lost the organization due to her mistake.