Last week two sets of serious allegations were made public against Shahid Buttar, our endorsed candidate for Congressional District 12.
The first is from an individual who spent time in the same social circles as Buttar around 20 years ago claiming Mr. Buttar sexually harassed them multiple times.The second set of claims are from several members of his former staff, reporting that Shahid Buttar fostered a toxic and misogynistic work environment, and was verbally and/or emotionally abusive to staff.
These allegations are very serious and our executive board responded in kind. We immediately reviewed the accusations, reached out to witnesses, interviewed Shahid Buttar, and discussed and voted on next steps. This process took over six hours , including deliberations, questions, and discussion amongst our executive board and these were our conclusions:
First the allegations of sexual harassment. Individual members of our board spoke to the accuser, Elizabeth Corbyn, as well as witnesses and found that we did not have enough information nor were we the proper body to determine whether or not Mr. Buttar committed sexual harassment.
Second are the allegations from Mr. Buttar’s staff, who claimed he fostered a toxic work environment. Based on the testimony of those involved and the widespread corroboration amongst former members of Shahid’s staff, many of whom are members of the San Francisco Berniecrats or other allied organizations, the Executive Board voted to recommend revoking Shahid Buttar’s endorsement and we will hold a full hearing and membership vote at our upcoming meeting on August 5th.
This was not an easy decision to make: many of our closest friends and allies spoke on both sides of this issue. The officers debated next steps for some but finally via majority vote the Executive Board made its decision.
Now we are inviting Mr. Buttar and his team as well as any accuser or representative of an accuser to join us at our meeting to share their testimony so the general membership can make the final determination on August 5th on whether or not our endorsement of Mr. Buttar should be revoked. Precautions will be made to ensure a safe space for all to participate and share their stories. We encourage all members in good standing to vote on this process that evening via anonymous ballots.
The meeting will be from 6pm-9pm on August 5th.
Here is the zoom info for the meeting: