American Association for Affirmative Action is Available to Discuss New Haven Firefighters' Case: Ricci v. Destefano

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Affirmative Action association President ReNee S. Dunman is available for press interviews on the New Haven Firefighters' civil rights case before the U.S. Supreme Court April 22, 2009.

The American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA) is available to speak with the news media on the civil rights/Equal Employment Opportunity case before the U.S. Supreme Court: Ricci v. DeStefano.

Founded in 1974, the American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA) is a national not-for-profit association of professionals working in the areas of affirmative action, equal opportunity, and diversity. AAAA helps its members to be more successful and productive in their careers. It also promotes understanding and advocacy of affirmative action to enhance access and equality in employment, economic and educational opportunities.

Representing AAAA for press interviews is AAAA President ReNeé S. Dunman. Ms. Dunman also serves as Assistant Vice-President, Office of Institutional Equity & Diversity, Old Dominion University.

This case goes to the heart of the federal equal employment opportunity and nondiscrimination laws passed in 1964; whether a test which has a "disparate impact" on racial and ethnic minorities may be lawfully disregarded and, in not using the test, does such action constitute "intentional discrimination" against white workers?

The Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, was enacted to promote equal opportunity when qualified women and minorities were (and are) excluded from the workplace and other venues by virtue of their gender and race. Title VII of the Act, related regulations and court decisions, specifically address discrimination in workplace selection practices. Such practices continue to exclude minorities and women from public as well as private employment, including opportunities in fire departments. As a result, employers are required to assess their selection processes to ensure that tests and other selection procedures do not have an adverse impact against those who have historically faced discrimination.

The plaintiffs in the Ricci v. DeStefano case assert that when local governments find their selection processes to have a disparate or adverse impact, and decide not to make hiring decisions because of such impact (in this case, a promotion), they are discriminating against the white workers. A decision against the City of New Haven could tie the hands of employers in both the public and private sectors who wish to comply with the civil rights laws. Compliance with the nondiscrimination laws could expose employers to liability; first, to the intended beneficiaries of the Civil Rights Act or secondly, to those who have theoretically "passed" such tests. In effect, the civil rights laws are turned on their heads and those who have suffered discrimination in public or private employment are left with no remedy.

What: Ricci v. DeStefano Supreme Court Oral Argument (New Haven Firefighters)

Where: Washington, D.C., United States Supreme Court, One First Street, NE.

When: April 22, 2009, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Thereafter, calls may be made to the AAAA National Office: 202-349-9855 or 240-893-9475 (at any time).

888 16th Street, NW, Suite 800
Washington, D.C. 20006
202-349-9855 ex 1857
Fax: 202-355-1399


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