Keeping a promise he made during his campaign, new Illinois Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias signed a wide-ranging Executive Ethics Order shortly after taking office.
“During my campaign, I pledged to issue, implement and enforce a comprehensive ethics package for the Secretary of State’s office upon taking office,” said Secretary Giannoulias. “As my first act, this Executive Ethics Order achieves this commitment from the very start of my administration and sets the bar to adhere to the highest ethical standards in state government.”
The order upgrades and improves transparency, codifies key procedures in the office’s internal policy manual, enhances protections afforded to victims of sexual harassment or threats of violence, and simplifies the public’s ability to submit complaints to the Inspector General’s office.
There are six key provisions that comprise the Executive Ethics Order, including:
- Performing a comprehensive review of the use of state vehicles to ensure they are only used for state business-related functions.
- Requiring all Secretary of State inspectors under the authority of the Inspector General to receive training from the national Association of Inspectors General to ensure that inspectors serve with the utmost professionalism and have the most up-to-date training.
- Establishing a dedicated Secretary of State Inspector General email account and prominently featuring it on the main Secretary of State webpage – ilsos.gov – to boost visibility and make it easier for the public and employees to submit complaints and report abuse.
- Strengthening the Secretary of State’s policy on sexual harassment to remove burdens from anyone mistreated or harassed and to ensure all victims are treated fairly and all perpetrators are held to account.
- Prohibiting threatening behavior, words or actual violence by mandating this prohibition in the Personnel Manual to ensure all threats of violence or actual violence in the workplace will not be tolerated and will be treated with the utmost seriousness.
- Prohibiting Secretary of State employees and contractual employees from contributing to the Secretary’s political fund by codifying this prohibition as official office policy.