3 Women File Bias Suit against Erie Child Agency

June 25, 2009

Three woman furloughed from supervisory positions at the Erie County, Pennsylvania Office of Children and Youth are suing the agency claiming the process targeted women.

County officials have weeks to respond to the federal lawsuit filed Friday, but have said the furloughs in 2006 were proper and meant to control costs and improve services in the wake of the Brittany Legler case. Legler was a mentally disabled 15-year-old who died after her adoptive beat her in 2004.

The Pennsylvania Civil Service Commission has issued a split ruling on the furloughs. The commission says the reorganization was justified, but that the furloughed employees should have been allowed to stay on as caseworkers.

One of the three women suing returned as a caseworker, and is now a supervisor.

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