FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASECR
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 10, 2001(202) 514-2007
WWW.USDOJ.GOVTDD (202) 514-1888
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE FILES SUIT AGAINST DELAWARE STATE
POLICE ALLEGING RACE DISCRIMINATION
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Department of Justice today filed suit against the Delaware State Police (DSP), as well as Delaware's Department of Public Safety and the State of Delaware, alleging a pattern or practice of discrimination against African Americans in hiring state troopers in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Today's civil suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, stems from an investigation by the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division which revealed that the written examination that the DSP used to select state troopers did not predict successful job performance, and disproportionately excluded African-American applicants from consideration for employment. After the Department's investigation began, the DSP discontinued using that test, and has used a different test since 1999 that currently is being reviewed by the Department of Justice.
"The Department of Justice is committed to the use of hiring procedures that do not discriminate and that accurately identify those applicants who are best qualified to serve in law enforcement," said Bill Lann Lee, Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. "We want to ensure that law enforcement agencies use hiring procedures that eliminate artificial barriers, not create them, and make relief available to those who are the victims of such illegal procedures."
In its complaint, the United States asks the federal district court to enter an order requiring the DSP, the Department of Public Safety, and the State of Delaware to provide make-whole relief, such as offers of employment, back pay, remedial seniority and other benefits of employment, to African Americans who have been harmed by the unlawfully discriminatory test. The complaint also asks the Court to order the DSP to refrain from using written hiring tests that disproportionately and unjustifiably exclude African-American trooper applicants. The complaint also asks the Court to order the DSP to adopt other appropriate measures to overcome the effects of their discriminatory practices.