Alamance Municipal ABC Board recently came under fire in a lawsuit filed by a former employee over allegations of gender discrimination and wrongful termination.
A lawsuit was filed against Alamance Municipal ABC Board earlier this week over allegations that a former female sales clerk was wrongfully terminated and discriminated against. In addition to the discrimination allegations, the former employee, Terri Wall, that filed the suit on September 27 claims a “male co-worker of the store would photograph customers — specifically female students from Elon University.”
The suit was filed in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina. Prior to her termination, Wall worked as a sales clerk for eight years. When commenting on why she was terminated, Wall said it was likely because she took “mini-bottles provided by distributors to the stores, and solicited items from distributors for a charity.” However, she also alleges those actions “were known and supported by other members of the board.” She added she was “terminated based on her sex by, among other things, pointing out the far more lenient treatment afforded male employees as compared to female employees.”
For example, the suit alleges her male co-workers often drank on the job, sold alcohol to underage customers, and allegedly took part in “sexual behavior toward female employees and customers,” according to the suit. The suit also refers to two of the male employees as ‘Mr. P’ and ‘Mr. S.’ According to Wall, those two “engaged in discriminatory behavior regularly that went ignored by supervisors.” For example, one time “Mr. P placed his hands on Wall’s hips from behind in a sexual manner.” In other instances, the suit alleges Mr. P “would put his feet up on the counter and rub his groin when Wall or another woman was around.”
Despite reporting the incidents, Wall’s suit alleges that a former general manager simply said that “Mr. P was just a playboy, who was harmless and just likes white women.” To make matters worse, the suit claims the Board knew Mr. S secretly took pictures of “female customers in the ABC store where he worked, including photographs of female Elon University students he found attractive or who had certain body parts he found attractive.” Yet the Board did nothing to stop him. Instead, his behavior was an “ongoing joke among ABC’s truck team and the photos, taken on a cellphone, were shared among other male employees,” according to the lawsuit. The suit further states, “Mr. S secretly took photos of the backsides of female customers while they were bent over in the store, and he also took photos of their breasts.”
As a result of his picture taking, the stores allegedly “received at least one complaint from a customer who felt uncomfortable shopping in the store where Mr. S worked because of his behavior.”