Tuesday, January 26, 2010

New York Fire Department must fix past hiring bias

If you have ever been in Bed-Stuy, Harlem or the Bronx and wondered who those big, older, out of place white guys are ?? Well now you know! They are firefighters. And they got their cushy jobs through discrimination. At least that's what a Brooklyn Judge says.

Last week, a Brooklyn federal judge, Nicholas Garaufis, found the Fire Department of New York had engaged in intentional discrimination. Last year, he has found that the FDNY used two employment test that resulted in disparate impact discrimination. This January, he found that the deparment practiced intentional discrimination.

Now that the complaint phase is completed, the remedy phase can begin. He has ordered the city to create a new exam and compensate hundreds of Blacks and Hispanics who took the exam between 1999 and 2007. Of the 11,000 firefighters, about 3% are Black and 4% are Hispanic.

Some of his suggested remedies is the priority hiring of Blacks and Hispanics at the same rate as whites to correct for past discrimination.

The original complaint is here.

The finding and remedy proposals are here.

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