Physical Fitness Test for Pa. State Troopers Biased Against Women, DOJ Charges in Suit

A physical fitness test that the state of Pennsylvania uses for hiring entry-level state troopers discriminates against female applicants, the U.S. Department of Justice has charged in a just-filed lawsuit.

According to the DOJ, the test, which has been in use since 2003, disproportionately discriminates against women because they failed it at a statistically significantly greater rate than male applicants. The test included a 300-meter run, sit-ups, push-ups, a vertical jump and a 1.5-mile run.

More than nine in ten men (94 percent) passed the test compared with 71 percent of women, and even under a modified version of the test since 2009, 98 percent of men have passed versus only 72 percent of women.

In the government’s estimation, the test cost 119 women the opportunity for further consideration and 45 women would have been hired as entry level troopers if women had passed at the same ratio as women.

Here’s DOJ’s announcement of the lawsuit.


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