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Article published November 27, 2012
Eckstein’s aide files complaint against county
The administrative assistant to Butler County Commissioner Jim Eckstein has filed a sexual harassment complaint against the county with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In a letter dated Monday, Margaret Abersold alleges the other two commissioners, Bill McCarrier and Dale Pinkerton, former chief clerk Bill O’Donnell, solicitor Julie Graham and personnel director Lori Altman did nothing to protect Abersold’s rights during two public meetings. Abersold confirmed that she filed the complaint on Friday, but wouldn’t elaborate on specifics. “Everything else will be handled by the EOCC,” she said. McCarrier said it’s difficult to comment on the complaint because the letter doesn’t specify how Abersold’s rights weren’t protected. “I don’t understand what it’s about,” he said. The letter cites problems at the Oct. 10 and Nov. 8 commissioner meetings. According to the letter: “This is notice that I contacted and filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on Nov. 23, 2012, about stopping the harassing, offensive and hostile conduct and the sexually harassing, offensive, degrading ... and discriminatory activity.” Graham said she and Abersold had discussed public comment policy at various meetings, but the Nov. 26 letter is the first time that Abersold claimed she was a victim of sexual harassment.