Tags: Unions | FDNY | discrimination lawsuit | DeBlasio

Deputy Chief: FDNY Settlement Could Lead to More Discrimination

By    |   Friday, 21 Mar 2014 05:13 PM

Bad blood remains after a landmark discrimination lawsuit against the New York City Fire Department was settled this week.

FDNY Deputy Chief Paul Mannix thinks resolution will lead to weakened applicant standards and could pave the road to even more discrimination if Mayor DeBlasio follows through on his stated intention to make New York City government representative of the city's demographics.

"Well, listen, blacks are about 24 percent of the city population, yet they're 36 percent of all city workers and there are six or seven city agencies that are more racially out of balance than the FDNY," Mannix told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV. "Does this mean that we're going to have a moratorium on hiring blacks until all city employment 'looks like New York City?'"

The $100 million settlement, announced on Tuesday, was the conclusion of a lawsuit to diversify the FDNY after firefighter applicant tests in 1999 and 2002 featured questions that produced results indicating a testing bias against minorities, according to the New York Times.

Mannix said there was nothing wrong with the test itself, and that the courts mistakenly saw a problem that that minorities disproportionately failed the exams in those two years. The answers to certain questions were apparent in the questions themselves, but Mannix said the courts determined that reading comprehension shouldn't be required to be a firefighter.

"People think I'm lying sometimes, and I tell them that I don't blame you if you think I'm lying. That's how ridiculous this whole issue has gotten," Mannix said.

Mannix said the FDNY has made efforts for many years to help minority applicants.

"Even though the city of New York has bent over backwards for integrating, going back to the 1970s, there was quota hiring in the 70s for blacks in the FDNY," Mannix said. "As a result of that, they became almost eight percent of the firefighting ranks. Now, the fact that they dropped down to about three percent when this lawsuit was first filed is whose fault, especially since the city continued to recruit?"

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Bad blood remains after a landmark discrimination lawsuit against the New York City Fire Department was settled this week.
FDNY,discrimination lawsuit,DeBlasio
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2014-13-21
Friday, 21 Mar 2014 05:13 PM
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