Michelle Ugenti-Rita


PHOENIX — A four-term Arizona legislator says she faced sexual harassment by male colleagues.

Republican Rep. Michelle Ugenti-Rita of Scottsdale says in a Facebook post she "experienced unwanted sexual advances and lewd and suggestive comments" regarding her body and appearance as a newly elected lawmaker in 2011.

Ugenti-Rita says she' sharing her experiences amid the national discussion of sexual harassment in hopes of encouraging others to help address sexual and workplace harassment.

Ugenti-Rita's post doesn't identify her alleged harassers but she says she contacted House leaders after the behavior "became more aggressive and brazen." She says the leaders were understanding but couldn't do much because they aren't employers of fellow lawmakers.

Term limits bar Ugenti-Rita from running for re-election to the House next year, but she's running for a Senate seat.