U.S. v. New York City Bd. of Educ.

Decision Date11 September 2006
Docket NumberNo. 96-CV-0374 (FB)(RML) ACTION I.,96-CV-0374 (FB)(RML) ACTION I.
Citation448 F.Supp.2d 397
CourtU.S. District Court — Eastern District of New York
PartiesUNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff, v. NEW YORK CITY BOARD OF EDUCATION; City of New York; Lilliam Barrios-Paoli, Personnel Director, New York City Department of Personnel (in her official capacity); New York City Department of Personnel, Defendants, and John Brennan; James G. Ahearn; Dennis Mortenson and Scott Spring, Intervenors, and Janet. Caldero, Celia I. Calderon, Martha Chellemi, Andrew Clement, Kristen D'Alessio, Laura Daniele, Charmaine DiDonato, Dawn L. Ellis, Marcia P. Jarrett, Mary Kachadourian, Kathleen Luebkert, Adele A. McGreal, Marianne Maousakis, Sandra D. Morton, Maureen Quinn, Harry Santana, Carl D. Smith, Kim Tatum, Frank Valdez and Irene Wolkiewicz, Intervenors, and Pedro Arroyo, Jose Casado, Celestino Fernandez, Kevin Lafaye, Steven Lopez, Anibal Maldonado, James Martinez, Wilbert McGraw, Silvia Ortega De Green and Nicolas Pantelides, Intervenors. John Brennan; James Ahearn; Ernie Tricomi; Scott Spring; Dennis Mortensen; John Mitchell and Eric Schauer, Plaintiff, v. John Ashcroft; Ralph Boyd; United States Department of Justice; New York City Board of Education; City of New York; New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services and William J. Diamond, Defendants.

Charles E. Leggott, Esq., United States Department of Justice, Employment Litigation Section, Washington, DC, for Plaintiff.

Lawrence J. Profeta, Esq., The City of New York Law Department, New York City, for Defendants.

Michael E. Rosman, Esq., Center for Individual Rights, Washington, DC, for Intervenor Brennan, et al.

Matthew B. Calangelo, Esq., NAACP Legal Defense Fund & Educational Fund, Inc., New York City, for Intervenor Arroyo, et al.

Emily J. Martin, Esq., American Civil Liberties Union, Women's Rights Project, New York City, for Intervenor Caldero, et al.

MEMORANDUM ORDER

BLOCK, Senior District Judge.

                TABLE OF CONTENTS
                INTRODUCTION...........................................................404
                BACKGROUND.............................................................406
                   A. The Substance of the United States' Action.......................406
                      1. The Testing Claims............................................406
                         a. Hiring Practices...........................................406
                         b. Custodian Exam No. 5040....................................407
                         c. Custodian Engineer Exam Nos. 8206/8609.....................407
                         d. Custodian Exam No. 1074 ...................................407
                      2. The Recruiting Claim..........................................408
                   B. The Settlement Agreement.........................................409
                   C. The Impact of the Settlement Agreement on Seniority..............410
                      1. School Building Transfers.....................................411
                      2. Temporary Care Assignments....................................411
                      3. Layoffs.......................................................412
                  D. The Fairness Hearing and Magistrate Judge Levy's Memorandum and
                       Order...........................................................413
                   E. The Second Circuit's Remand......................................415
                   F. The Post-Remand Interventions....................................416
                      1. The Brennan Interventions.....................................416
                      2. The Calder() and Arroyo Interventions.........................417
                   G. Post-Remand Challenges By The Brennan Intervenors................417
                      1. Challenges to the Reputed Protected Class.....................417
                      2. Challenges to the Testing Claims..............................418
                         a. Proof of Discrimination....................................418
                         b. Non-Victims of Discrimination..............................419
                      3. Challenges to the Recruiting Claim............................420
                         a. Proof of Discrimination....................................420
                         b. Non-Victims of Discrimination..............................421
                   H. Issues Briefed...................................................421
                DISCUSSION.............................................................421
                                           Preliminary Matters
                   A. Brennan Intervenors' Status......................................421
                   B. Effect of the Summary Judgment Motions on Action II..............422
                   C. Protected Class..................................................422
                                                 Title VII
                   A. Statistical Basis For the Affirmative-Action Plan................423
                      1. Testing Claims................................................425
                      2. Recruiting Claim..............................................427
                   B. Relief...........................................................428
                      1. Transfers and TCAs............................................431
                     2. Layoffs........................................................431
                                         Fourteenth Amendment
                   A. Race-Based Classifications.......................................434
                      1. Compelling Interest For Race-Based Relief.....................434
                      2. Narrowly Tailored.............................................438
                         a. Transfers and TCAs.........................................439
                         b. Layoffs....................................................440
                   B. Sex-Based Classifications........................................441
                      1. Important Governmental Interest...............................442
                      2. Substantially Related.........................................442
                
                Remaining Matters
                   A. Propriety of Entry of a Consent Judgment.........................443
                   B. Class Certification..............................................444
                RECAPITULATION.........................................................446
                   A. Testing Claims...................................................446
                   B. Recruiting Claim.................................................446
                   C. Reflections......................................................446
                CONCLUSIONS............................................................447
                
INTRODUCTION

In 1993, the New York City Board of Education (the "Board") conducted a demographic survey of its Custodians and Custodian Engineers (collectively, "custodial employees");1 it disclosed that 99% of its 831 permanent custodial employees were men, and that 92% were white.2 A few years later, in 1996, the United States, in Action I, sued the Board pursuant to section 707(a) of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-6(a),3 claiming that three entry-level examinations that the Board had administered, as well as the recruiting practices it had used to publicize those exams, violated Title VII. The lawsuit resulted in a Settlement Agreement (the "Agreement") that awarded employment benefits to a group of 59 individuals (the "beneficiaries") composed of black, Hispanic and Asian men and women, and non-minority females. See Jan. 10, 2005 Decl. of James Lonergan, Ex. I (Agreement).

This spawned interventions in that action by two groups supportive of the settlement, and one group opposed. Those supportive were 31 of the 59 beneficiaries (the "Caldero" and "Arroyo" intervenors). Those opposed were four white male custodial employees (the "Brennan" intervenors), who railed against the adverse effect the Agreement had on their seniority rights in regard to (1) school building transfers, (2) temporary care assignments, and (3) layoffs; rather than rely on their intervention rights, they also, together with two other white male custodial employees, brought a separate action (Action II).4 In both actions, all the white males assert that their seniority rights were violated in those three aspects under both Title VII and the Fourteenth Amendment and seek injunctive relief.5 The two additional white males in Action II also seek monetary damages because they allegedly were denied school building transfers that, under the Agreement, were instead given to two unidentified beneficiaries.6

After extensive pre-trial proceedings and a protracted procedural history, the issue of the validity of the challenged parts of the. Agreement is now presented to the Court by the intervenors' respective motions for partial summary judgment in Action I.7 Also before the Court are a motion in Action I by the Board to enter the Agreement as a consent judgment,8 and motions by the white males in both actions for class-action certification.9

The Court declines to enter the Agreement as a consent judgment. The Court declares, however, that the Agreement is valid under Title VII, except to the extent that it grants preferential seniority as to layoffs to non-victims of race, national origin and gender discrimination.10 The Court further declares that the Agreement is also valid under the Fourteenth Amendment, except to the extent that it (1) grants preferential seniority as to layoffs to non-victims of race or national-origin discrimination, and (2) grants relief to racial or ethnic minorities based on the recruiting claim. The Court also declares that one of the 59 beneficiaries is not a member of protected class. Finally, the Court grants class-action status to those whose layoff-protection rights were displaced by non-victims of discrimination.11

There are issues of fact which must now be resolved as to (1) whether there was sufficient evidence of discrimination in respect to one of the challenged exams; (2) the number of non-female blacks, Hispanics and Asians who received relief under the recruiting claim; (3) the number of blacks and Hispanics receiving preferential seniority for purposes of layoffs under the testing claims who were not actual victims of discrimination; and (4) the identities of the individual beneficiaries who...

To continue reading

Request your trial
2 cases
  • U.S. v. Brennan
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • May 5, 2011
    ...CEs, one for Custodians with at least 15 years' seniority, and one for other Custodians. United States v. N.Y. City Bd. of Educ., 448 F.Supp.2d 397, 411–12 (E.D.N.Y.2006) [hereinafter NYC Board III ]. None of the parties' briefs mentions three lists, nor do these briefs cite any part of the......
  • U.S. v. New York City Bd. of Educ.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Eastern District of New York
    • May 28, 2008
    ...Senior District Judge. Familiarity with the Court's Memoranda and Orders of September 11, 2006 ("September 11th M & O"), United States v. New York City Bd. of Educ., 448 F.Supp.2d 397 (E.D.N.Y.2006), and April 20, 2007 ("April 20th M & O"), United States v. New York City Bd. of Educ, F.Supp......
1 books & journal articles
  • The Equal Rights Amendment: then and now.
    • United States
    • Columbia Journal of Gender and Law Vol. 17 No. 3, September 2008
    • September 22, 2008
    ...at http://seattle.bizjournals.com/seattle/stories/2008/01/28/smallb3.html. (164) See, e.g., United States v. N.Y. City Bd. of Educ., 448 F. Supp. 2d 397 (E.D.N.Y. (165) Brown et al., Equal Rights for Women, supra note 22, at 904. (166) See, e.g., Nat'l Elec. Contractors Ass'n v. Pierce Coun......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT