Sexual harassment and discrimination claims are all too common these days – so common, in fact, that it would seem like such cases should fall more in the “old news” category than in the “breaking news story” category. However, some Texas sexual harassment cases are still making the news, especially if a public figure is involved or if the details are such that the media believes the public would be particularly interested.
In such situations, an issue may arise as to what – if any – information an investigative reporter (or anyone else for that matter) is entitled to know. With regard to public employers (such as schools and universities), it may take a court’s assistance in order to determine what information must be revealed – and which must be kept away from public consumption.
Facts of the Case
A recent appellate court case involved a dispute between an independent school district and the Texas Attorney General’s office. The case arose as a result of a disagreement regarding whether the school district had to release a certain document (which included, among other things, information regarding complaints of workplace harassment, alleged acts of discrimination, romantic affairs between district employees, and investigations conducted by child protective services). The information had been requested by a news reporter under the Texas Public Information Act.