Former Westmoreland County employee claims she was sexually harassed

By Kasey Schefflin-Emrich | Jul 6, 2015

U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh  

PITTSBURGH - A Jeannette resident has brought allegations against her former employer and an employee claiming violation of civil rights.

Katie Pecarchik as a filed a lawsuit June 10 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania against Michael Ginsburg, Register of Wills of Westmoreland County, and Westmoreland County, alleging sexual harassment.

According to the complaint, Pecarchik started working for Westmoreland County in the Office of Register of Wills in 2003. She alleges that she was subjected to a sexually hostile work environment throughout her employment.

The suit states that Ginsburg, who held supervisory powers and began his term in 2012, made ongoing comments of a sexual nature to Pecarchik, frequently touched her in an inappropriate manner and engaged in unwanted conduct of a sexual nature toward her and other female employees. Ginsburg repeatedly warned her that anyone who complained about harassment would be fired, she claims.

In July 2013 Pecarchik complained to both Westmoreland County Commissioner Ted Kopas and Director of Human Resources Charles Dominick. The civil action states she had to take medical leave in July 2013 and wasn't released to return until December of that year.

In an article in the Pittsburgh Tribune, Ginsburg denied the allegations.

The plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive damages; back and front pay; pre- and post-judgment interest; and attorney fees and costs. She is being represented by attorney Susan N. Williams of Williams Law Offices in Greensburg.

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania case number 2:15-cv-00764-NBF.

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