Many unpaid interns working on Capitol Hill are required to sign non-disclosure agreements on their first day in Congress, Vox reported Monday.
The agreements are reportedly designed to keep interns from speaking up about anything that happens in a lawmaker’s office, even in cases of harassment or abuse.
Vox obtained and examined the non-disclosure agreements from the officers of a Democratic House and Senate member and spoke with 20 interns who said they were required to sign a similar document. Lawyers told Vox that the language used in some of the agreements was broad in scope, lacked an exception for interns who wanted to speak up about harassment and came with no guarantee that interns would receive a copy of the signed agreement.
The agreements apply even after an intern leaves Capitol Hill and is reportedly designed to keep lawmakers and their office staffers safe, despite being touted as agreements to protect sensitive information, Vox reported.
Read the full Vox report here.