Group of Black Firefighters Initially Rejected in 1995 Finally Graduate
6 months ago
Firefighters who won a 2011 case again the Chicago Fire Department graduated yesterday
A group of firefighters who applied to join the Chicago Fire Department in 1995 got to earn their firefighter certificates.
Seventeen years ago, close to 26,000 applicants took a written test to become firefighters in the city and most were denied because they did not do well enough. Last year a lawsuit filed by rejected black applicants was successful and the city was ordered to train 111 applicants and pay another 5,870 a $51.5 million total cash payout.
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The lawsuit argued that many applicants - particularly black applicants - were cut off by an arbitrary score limit. The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed and yesterday the first members of the class that was rejected 17 years ago graduated. There were 86 firefighter certificates handed out in all.