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PHILADELPHIA v. HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION (02/24/72)

decided: February 24, 1972.

PHILADELPHIA
v.
HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION



Appeal from the Order of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission in case of Joanne B. Rossi v. The City of Philadelphia and The Fairmount Park Commission, No. E-3412.

COUNSEL

Albert J. Persichetti, Deputy City Solicitor, with him Levy Anderson, City Solicitor, for appellant.

Stanton W. Kratzok, Assistant General Counsel, with him S. Asher Winikoff, General Counsel, Salvatore J. Cucinotta, Deputy Attorney General, and J. Shane Creamer, Attorney General, and, of counsel, Roy Yaffe, Robert Englesberg and Gerald E. Magaro, for appellee.

President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and Blatt. Opinion by Judge Kramer.

Author: Kramer

[ 4 Pa. Commw. Page 507]

This is an appeal from a "Final Order" of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (Commission),

[ 4 Pa. Commw. Page 508]

    dated August 2, 1971, under which the City of Philadelphia (City) was ordered, inter alia, to grant to the complainant, Joanne B. Rossi (Rossi) ". . . the opportunity to apply to be employed as a Fairmount Park policeman . . . by executing an application for the position of policeman. . . ."

On August 8, 1969, Rossi filed a Complaint with the Commission,*fn1 alleging an unlawful discriminatory practice by the City in violation of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act of October 27, 1955, P.L. 744, as amended, 43 P.S. ยง 951 et seq.*fn2 In the Complaint Rossi averred: "On or about to wit, August 8, 1969, the respondents [City] refused to allow the application for the position of Fairmount Park policeman and the opportunity of employment in that position to the complainant [Rossi] because of the sex (female) of the complainant."

Despite the importance of the case, counsel for the Commission on behalf of Rossi presented a surprisingly brief case in chief.*fn3 This Court, in common with other appellate courts, applauds brevity, but not at the expense of proving a case. The most that can be gained from that portion of the record pertinent to the Complaint is that Rossi appeared at an office of the City, accompanied by a friend, some time during August of

[ 4 Pa. Commw. Page 5091969]

, where she requested an application blank for a position of "a Fairmount Park Policeman."*fn4 A female clerk at the desk advised Rossi that she could not give her an application form because "women were not permitted to apply." At that time Rossi was offered an application for the position of "Policewoman."*fn5

The remainder of the record is taken up with the City's response (1) that there is no provision under the City's Code or Ordinances for an application by anyone for the position of "Fairmount Park Policeman" (or "Guard") and (2) an attempt to justify a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) under the ...


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