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CITY HALL — The city is being sued by the federal government over Police Department hiring, but it has nothing to do with the ongoing Department of Justice probe into the department following the Laquan McDonald case.
The Law Department has already set a $3.1 million payment to settle the suit, and the City Council’s Finance Committee has put it on its agenda to be approved next week.
Rather than the ongoing civil-rights probe, the suit stems from a 10-year U.S. residency requirement imposed under Mayor Richard M. Daley following a department entrance exam in 2006.
The suit, filed Friday in U.S. District Court, charges that a city requirement that all police recruits have resided in the United States the previous 10 years produced “statistically significant adverse impact against candidates born outside the United States.”
It cited the cases of Masood Khan, who came to the United States from India in 2003, and Glenford Flowers, who came to this country from Belize in 1999. According to the initial complaint, both passed a 2006 police entrance exam, but were denied hiring by the department under that restriction.
The suit points out the city shortened that U.S. residency requirement from 10 years to five under Mayor Rahm Emanuel in 2011, which apparently passes legal muster, but it nonetheless seeks “make-whole relief” from those discriminated against, as well as keeping Chicago “from engaging in employment practices which discriminate against individuals born outside the United States.”
“The City of Chicago Department of Law and the Chicago Police Department worked cooperatively with the Department of Justice and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on a proposed settlement to resolve claims of employment discrimination that disqualified applicants who lived in the United States for less than 10 years from applying to become police officers,” said Law Department spokesman Bill McCaffrey. “These claims date back to 2006 and the policy was changed in 2011, and the proposed settlement resolves the claims of past discrimination.”
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