Who Decided To Hire Julio Perez At CSULB? An Investigation Is Needed.

By:OC Independent Editorial

In 2017, the #MeToo scandals rocked America. For years, powerful people in politics and Hollywood abused the young and powerless. Most prominent among those finally called out were movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, in 2020 sentenced to 23 years in prison; and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who last year was forced to resign.

Which makes it strange last fall Julio Perez was hired by the Chicano and Latino Studies Department at CSU Long Beach, and allowed to complete a full semester as an assistant professor. He left only after the semester ended on Dec. 23.

Perez in 2018 was fired from his position as Executive Director of the Orange County Labor Federation after serious charges of sexual harassment and abuse.

Reported Voice of OC, “An investigation into Perez was initiated in mid-October 2017 following allegations posted on Facebook, as part of the #metoo social media campaign to raise awareness of sexual harassment and assault, by several women alleging inappropriate behavior by Perez and the former executive director of the Democratic Party of Orange County, Erik Taylor.”

This story, along with others in the Independent and other media, including the school’s own Forty-Niner newspaper, easily can be discovered via a simple Google search. Moreover, Perez’s friends include Department Chair Rigoberto Rodriguez, also the president of the Santa Ana Unified Board of Education. And Professor Jose F. Moreno, also an Anaheim councilman. They obviously knew Perez, and the #MeToo allegations.

Last October, CSULB Spokesperson Jeff Cook told the Forty-Niner, “We are engaged in a detailed review of the matter, and how practices and procedures can change in the future, as appropriate.” So, again, the school obviously was aware of what was going on.

On Jan. 11 this year, Cook replied to an inquiry by the Independent, “There is no investigation of Mr. Perez by the university.”

But there ought to be. CSULB needs to find out how a man with serious #MeToo allegations against him was hired at all.

The allegations against Perez really are serious. As reported by the OC Weekly, “Two powerful Democratic Party men who alleged, unnamed victims say sexually harassed them are Erik Taylor, the former executive director of the DPOC, and Julio Perez, the executive director of Orange County Labor Federation, confirms Danielle Serbin, the Orange County Young Democrats chairwoman.

“As part of the #MeToo campaign, the following was posted by a woman on Facebook:”

In the wake of the #MeToo scandal, institutions across the country began reexamining and refashioning their sexual harassment policies. One that did so was the California Legislature after 150 women working in the Capitol signed a letter decrying a culture of abuse. Reforms were made, including three #MeToo bills signed into law in 2019 by Gov. Gavin Newsom. Three state legislators were forced to resign amid allegations against them.

In the case of Perez, if CSULB doesn’t investigate how he was hired, then CSU itself should do so, or perhaps Attorney General Rob Bonta. A Democrat, he is running for re-election this year against what is expected to be tough Republican opposition stressing “law and order” issues during a time of increasing crime.

What clear is so far CSULB has fallen down on the issue of protecting its faculty and students against potential abuse.

Ada Briceño, chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Orange County, last October told the Forty-Niner, “It’s outrageous what our community went through here in Orange County. We don’t think he should be teaching as a professor at CSULB after what happened four years ago.”

Why was he kept around two more months? And why was he hired at all?


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The OC Independent is dedicated to providing factual, informative reporting on Orange County government, politics, education and quality of life issues such as homelessness and access to housing. We seek to illuminate aspects of issues, movements and trends that receive little or no attention from more established, mainstream outlets. Our editorial philosophy is grounded in the principles of the American Founding: limited government, federalism, the separation of powers and equality before the law as indispensable to securing our liberties. The opinions and stances articulated in OC Independent editorials flow from those principles, and are grounded in facts.