Former North Myrtle Beach employee sues city for discrimination

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First page of Carolina Garcia v. City of North Myrtle Beach (WBTW)

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — A former North Myrtle Beach employee filed a lawsuit against the city for discrimination, claiming she was classified as a part-time employee despite working 40 hours a week and dealt with other harassment, according to the lawsuit obtained by News13.

In the lawsuit filed April 15, Carolina Garcia claims she was hired in June 2016 by the City of North Myrtle Beach to work part-time between 35-40 hours a week. Her time increased to 40 hours a week but was split between the revenue department and the water billing department to prevent classification as a full-time employee.

Garcia also claims she was subjected to “unwanted touching by the Director of Finance” throughout the duration of her employment, which created a hostile work environment, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit says Garcia complained to the city manager about her classification as a part-time employee, which prevented her from job benefits she claims she was entitled to and that no corrective action was taken.

Garcia says she was disciplined for “minor work infractions” in September 2019, which she believes was retaliation for complaining about harassment to the city manager, according to the lawsuit.

After weeks of furlough, Garcia was terminated on May 8, 2020, according to the lawsuit. Garcia claims the furlough was due to discrimination and retaliation.

Garcia claims she was discriminated against and subject to employment actions, furlough, and termination due to her sex, age, religion, and/or race in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, according to the lawsuit.

North Myrtle Beach spokesperson Pat Dowling said the city doesn’t typically comment on pending litigation, and as of Friday night, the city hasn’t been served with the lawsuit.

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