Secret Service issues stricter behavior standards

(CBS NEWS) WASHINGTON -- Moving quickly to try to put its record of bad behavior behind it, the Secret Service has issued strict new behavior guidelines.

The enhanced standards were sent out to all Secret Service personnel, and are effective immediately.

It's the latest attempt by the agency to get control of the sex scandal enveloping the agency, amid new questions about a culture of inappropriate behavior.

The agency handed down the new "enhanced standards of conduct" two weeks after the Secret Service prostitution scandal broke in Colombia, as allegations of inappropriate behavior expanded to four countries.

An internal agency memo says personnel should "consider your conduct through the lens of the past several weeks."

Among the enhanced standards: Foreign nationals cannot enter employees' hotel rooms, excluding hotel staff and official counterparts. Patronizing in non-reputable establishments is not allowed. And drinking alcohol can only be done while off-duty and in moderate amounts. It's prohibited within 10 hours of reporting for duty.

Next week, more than 100 Secret Service personnel are scheduled to take an ethics in law enforcement class. The agency says more of these additional training sessions will be held throughout the year.

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Allegations of partying, drinking and inappropriate sexual activity have expanded to four countries.

The Secret Service says it has yet to launch formal investigations into the new allegations.

"You know nothing's changed in Washington if heads don't roll," Sen. Charles Grassley (R, Iowa) said on "CBS This Morning" Friday. He said officials must be held accountable, but stopped short of calling for Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan to step down.

As a number of lawmakers demand a wider investigation, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has a different take on correcting the culture of the agency.

Asked by CBS News correspondent Nancy Cordes Thursday what he thinks should be done "if it turns out this is a recurring problem," Reid replied, "Hire more females."

To see Whit Johnson's report, click on the video in the player above.

  • Whit Johnson

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