Posts Tagged ‘test validation’

Exam Kept Job Opportunities From African Emigres, EEOC Alleges in Title VII Lawsuit

It appears that a Colorado employer set up its African immigrant employees to fail, and that has landed it opposite the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in federal court.

The EEOC announced July 27 that it has sued New Mercer Commons Assisted Living Facility and Columbine Health Systems for discriminating against “its small minority African workforce,” by among other things implementing a new employment exam that disparately affected their continuing employment opportunities.

In addition, the EEOC charged,  white supervisor was fired in retaliation after she refused to participate in discriminatory practices against African employees.

The commission’s complaint singled out the treatment of an Ethiopian émigré who worked at New Mercer Commons for nine years as a personal care assistant before she was fired. The key language from EEOC’s announcement of the lawsuit:

“After a change in management at the facility, her work conditions rapidly deteriorated. She was disciplined, her performance critiqued, her annual merit-based raise withheld for the first time, and management made hostile comments about her national origin and accent. On the day she was discharged, three other employees from Sudan were also fired. All four employees were told that they were being fired because they had not received passing scores on the newly implemented written exam.”

In the EEOC’s view, the defendants failed to validate the examination so that it accurately measures job-related functions. Rather, the examination tended to screen out minority candidates capable of performing the job.

Here’s the EEOC’s announcement of the lawsuit.