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GREEN v. UNITED STATES STEEL CORP.

July 18, 1983

ELBERT G. GREEN, Individually and ROBERT DANLEY, Individually and as the Representative of Persons Similarly Situated
v.
UNITED STATES STEEL CORPORATION



The opinion of the court was delivered by: NEWCOMER

 Newcomer, J.

 This employment discrimination class action was tried to the Court in December, 1982. The following shall constitute my Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law.

 Findings of Fact

 1. This is a Title VII and § 1981 class action brought on behalf of all black persons who unsuccessfully sought employment at the Fairless Hills, Pennsylvania plant of United States Steel Corporation ("USS") between July 11, 1972 and the present. The class described above was certified by Order dated August 26, 1980.

 2. The defendant, USS, is a corporation doing business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, in many other states, and in foreign countries. Throughout the class period, USS owned and operated steel manufacturing and other facilities located in Fairless Hills, Pennsylvania and employed from 7,000 to 10,000 persons there. USS is an "employer" within the meaning of Title VII. (Unless otherwise specified, references hereinafter to USS shall be understood to refer specifically to the Fairless Hills facilities of USS.)

 3. Named plaintiff Elbert Green is a black male who unsuccessfully sought employment as a laborer in USS's Production & Maintenance department ("P & M") by application dated April 11, 1973. On May 7, 1973, Green filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") a timely charge of race discrimination in employment against USS, and subsequently he received a notice of his right to sue in federal court.

 4. Green was an unnamed member of the plaintiff class of unsuccessful black job applicants at USS in Dickerson v. United States Steel Corp., C.A. No. 73-1292, a Title VII and § 1981 race discrimination suit.

 5. On November 29, 1976, following the severance of the applicant class from the Dickerson lawsuit, Green filed this action on his own behalf and on behalf of the applicant class.

 6. Named plaintiff Robert Danley is a black male who unsuccessfully sought a P & M job by application dated June 4, 1976.

 7. Danley was also initially an unnamed class member in Dickerson. Following his receipt of notice of the severance of the applicant class from that action, Danley filed with the EEOC a timely charge of race discrimination in employment against USS and received a notice of his right to sue in federal court.

 8. When Green filed this action on behalf of the applicant class, Danley became an unnamed class member. On January 10, 1979, Danley filed a motion to intervene as a named plaintiff. Prior to a ruling by the Court, the parties stipulated that Danley could serve as Green's co-representative of the applicant class.

 9. By a Memorandum and Order dated August 29, 1979, I entered partial summary judgment in favor of USS on Green's individual claim. Discovery had established that Green had falsified his employment history on his job application. I held that this evidence satisfied USS's burden of articulating a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason for its failure to hire Green. I reserved for trial the questions whether plaintiff was qualified for the job for which he applied; whether USS was hiring anyone for those jobs at the time he applied; whether it was hiring for those jobs immediately after his rejection; and whether, if plaintiff could establish a prima facie case, plaintiff could establish that USS's articulated reason for rejecting him was a standard applied equally to all races or was, rather, a mere pretext for racial discrimination.

 10. In my August 26, 1980 class certification order, I ruled that Green could not serve as a class representative because his claim, presenting the narrow and atypical issue whether USS had uniformly and nondiscriminatorily rejected applicants who falsified their job applications, was not appropriate for class treatment. Danley thus became the sole class representative, and Green remained a named plaintiff on his individual claim only.

 12. On the first day of trial, plaintiffs narrowed their case to include only those blacks who unsuccessfully sought employment in P & M jobs during the class period. Plaintiffs also indicated that they were not pressing their case as to the years 1975, 1980, and 1981, when very little hiring was done for P & M jobs at Fairless Hills, or as to the years 1976 and 1977, when plaintiff's evidence showed that a moderate amount of hiring was done but that blacks were hired at levels close to or exceeding their representation in the applicant pool. Plaintiff's case therefore focussed on the question whether USS unlawfully discriminated against black P & M applicants at Fairless Hills in the years 1972-74, 1978, and 1979.

 13. Plaintiff Danley did not testify at trial, and plaintiffs presented no proof directly relating to him as an individual, other than his application for employment and a stipulation relating to his satisfaction of the jurisdictional prerequisites. His application date of June, 1976 places him among those class members who applied to USS at a time when plaintiff's statistical evidence shows that USS was hiring blacks at rates equalling or exceeding their representation in the applicant pool.

 14. Plaintiffs presented the testimony of two unnamed class members, Christine Davidson and Frederick Wright. Ms. Davidson, a black woman, submitted an application for a P & M job on August 24, 1976. She had a GED degree, vocational training, and a record of steady employment. Mr. Wright, a black man, submitted an application for a P & M job on June 8, 1977. He had several years of college education, prior work experience as a laborer, and a record of steady employment before, during, and after college. Although both Ms. Davidson and Mr. Wright possessed the qualifications necessary to be ...


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