A New Orleans sheriff, who is black, is accused of wrongfully terminating two black employees because of their race.
The former St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office employees filed separate lawsuits in U.S. District Court in New Orleans earlier this month, the New Orleans Advocate reported.
A suit filed on Oct. 7 by Darlinta Cook Garrison alleges Sheriff Mike Tregre “habitually singles out black employees under his command for adverse treatment in comparison to their white counterparts.”
Tregre is accused of racial and gender bias.
According to Garrison’s suit, she was fired for insubordination and failure to report for duty in April of last year. Garrison claims supervisors revoked her time off and ordered her to return to work on a switchboard – a task she’d never performed before.
Her suit alleges that two white women in her department – who were not on leave – were not asked to work the switchboard, according to the Advocate.
Another suit, filed on Oct. 15, accuses Tregre of overseeing the firing of a woman who had been discriminated against for sounding “ghetto.”
Sharleen Moye’s suit alleges she endured “insulting criticism regarding her decorum and speech pattern” from a supervisor after being hired by the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office as a dispatch operator in March of last year.
The supervisor, “in her racist bigotry and prejudice,” said Moye sounded “ghetto,” according to the lawsuit.
The suit also claims she was described in “a socially unacceptable and intolerable manner using profanity and disturbing language” in a text message sent by a supervisor.
Moye complained to higher-ups about the treatment, but they refused to permit her to file a grievance, the suit alleges.
In 2018, a former police dispatcher filed a suit against Tregre claiming she’d been fired before receiving a promotion that was eventually given to a white woman.