Assemblymember Reyes’ Statement Concerning San Bernardino Mayor John Valdivia.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

San BernardinoThe following is a statement made by Assemblymember Eloise Gómez Reyes regarding the sexual harassment and workplace harassment allegations made against Mayor John Valdivia.

“The allegations concerning Mayor John Valdivia’s conduct both in his previous capacity as a member of the City Council and his conduct as Mayor are very alarming.   Sexual harassment and bullying in the workplace must be addressed swiftly and with real consequences.  I support those who have publicly shared their stories in an effort to ensure these alleged actions do not continue by Mayor John Valdivia.

The employees who work for the City of San Bernardino, like all employees across this state and nation, do not deserve to be harassed, marginalized or bullied. Our workplaces must be locations of respect and dignity.  The people of San Bernardino deserve vision and leadership from their elected officials, not examples of bad behavior.

Due process is a fundamental aspect of our legal system and in this case, it should be no different.  Mayor Valdivia and the current and previous employees that have come forward, all deserve due process and an opportunity to be heard.  Yet, while respecting due process we must also acknowledge the serious disruption this is creating for the community, employees and businesses of the City of San Bernardino.

In 2018, I was a member of the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Sexual Harassment Prevention and Response that provided recommendations to implement cultural and policy changes to reduce sexual harassment in the Legislature and create a safe and supportive workplace for both employees and members of the public.    A key goal of the subcommittee’s work was to transform the Legislature’s Workplace Culture to promote respect, civility and diversity and every person’s responsibility to build that culture.

It is for these reasons, that I call on Mayor John Valdivia to take a leave of absence until such time that these claims can be adjudicated, and if it is found that he did indeed engage in this behavior, he must resign immediately.”

Assemblymember Eloise Gómez Reyes represents Assembly District 47, which includes the cities of Fontana, Rialto, Colton, Grand Terrace, San Bernardino and the unincorporated areas of Muscoy and Bloomington.