Affirmance by the Second Circuit of Dismissal of Reverse Discrimination Suit Challenging Police Promotion Practices 

In Maraschiello v. City of Buffalo, Hodgson Russ obtained summary judgment and successfully defended an appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The plaintiff was next in line for promotion on the civil service eligible list for police inspector. After he lost his opportunity for promotion, he sued claiming reverse discrimination. In forcefully rejecting the plaintiff’s contention that Buffalo acted for impermissible race-based reasons in discarding civil service exam results, the Second Circuit emphasized that Buffalo’s “problem was the test itself, rather than with a particular set of results.” The Second Circuit’s decision has broad significance for municipalities and other employers nationally as it makes clear that employers retain substantial discretion to design and implement new employment procedures for purposes of complying with Title VII and other anti-discrimination law, despite claims by majority plaintiffs that such compliance efforts constitute reverse discrimination.

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