Two female employees of the Sheriff's Department have filed claims against Stanislaus County, both identical to one last week stemming from a dispute over jail guards' work schedules.
The latest claims, by Julie Sweetser, 42, and Stefani May, 43, bring to seven the number of gender-based legal challenges facing the department in recent months, brought by a total of 10 current or former workers.
Sweetser and May join Denise Ubides in a protest over shift flexibility.
State law allows male guards to oversee female inmates in some circumstances, but only if a female guard is available for searches or anything else requiring entrance to a cell.
An agreement hammered out last year with the guards' union appears to satisfy the law, but it provides female guards with less flexibility than the more numerous male guards.
The three women name Sheriff Adam Christianson and his department as responsible parties and seek "approximately $100,000" each. The women are represented by Pleasanton attorneys involved in the second week of a sexual harassment and retaliation trial against the Sheriff's Department.
Former records clerk Lydia Lopez this morning is expected to take the witness stand for a third day. She accuses department managers of creating a hostile work environment after she spurned what she claims were advances from Bill Pooley. He was cleared in an investigation and has since been promoted to Riverbank police chief.
The trial is scheduled to continue at 9:30 a.m. today in Department 23 at the City Tower building, 801 10th St., Modesto.