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Erie Human Relations Commission v. Tullio

decided: March 4, 1974.

ERIE HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION ET AL., APPELLEES
v.
LOUIS J. TULLIO, MAYOR OF CITY OF ERIE, ET AL., APPELLANTS



Hunter, C.j.

Author: Hunter

HUNTER, C.J.:

This is an appeal in an action brought by the Erie Human Relations Commission and four individual blacks in which it was alleged that the hiring procedures used to staff the Erie, Pennsylvania Police Department discriminate against blacks, in violation of the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. ยงยง 1981, 1983 (1970), and the equal protection clause. The district court found in favor of the plaintiffs on the merits and ordered the imposition of a limited racial hiring quota. The appellants, various officials of the City of Erie, do not appeal the finding of discrimination, but they do challenge the propriety of this relief. In addition, they contend that the plaintiff Erie Human Relations Commission lacks standing to sue. We agree with the appellants on the standing issue but conclude that their attack on the district court's affirmative order lacks merit.

This suit was filed on March 22, 1973 and was accompanied by a Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order that sought, inter alia, to enjoin the defendants from administering a police civil service "mental" examination scheduled to be given on March 24, 1973. The motion was granted and a Temporary Restraining Order was issued on March 23, 1973.

The parties thereupon entered into negotiations that resulted in a stipulation which permitted the City to proceed with the mental examination on April 21, 1973. In return, the defendants agreed to make numerous changes in the requirements that must be met in order to be eligible to take the police mental examination (these preliminary requirements are hereinafter referred to as "pre-exam requirements").*fn1 In addition, the City agreed that:

"upon verification by the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that there exists a mental examination for applicants for the position of police officer, which has been validated both as to job-relatedness and to the exclusion of cultural bias, the Civil Service Board will substitute that examination for the one presently in use."*fn2

Finally, the parties agreed to submit to the district court the question of what affirmative relief, if any, should be granted with respect to the hiring of black police officers.

In considering the question of affirmative relief, the district court adopted as its findings the factual assertions that were made a part of the stipulation. As a result, the record upon which the judgment is based contains the following agreed upon facts:

" (1) The Erie Police Department (hereinafter "E.P.D.") presently consists of 214 officers, 3 of whom are black.

" (2) During the period 1962-1972, 2 black officers were hired as police officers for the E.P.D.

" (3) During the period 1952-1972, 7 black officers were hired as police officers for the E.P.D.

" (4) 6.8% of the residents of the City of Erie, Pennsylvania (hereinafter "City") are black.

" (5) 1.4% of the officers of the E.P.D. are black.

" (7) Any discrimination based upon the above-mentioned disparity and statistics is not the result of any intentional discrimination on the part of ...


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