FDNY To Judge:You Know What You Can Do With Your Quotas

Well, not really but the city did say they are disinclined to acquiesce to the judge’s request.



On Friday 17 September Michael A. Cardozo, New York City’s corporation counsel told Federal District Court Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis which of the five hiring options for the FDNY the city had chosen.

None.

The city, despite earlier remarks that unfilled positions could jeopardize the safety of its citizens, reported back to Garaufis that using race-based quotas was unwise and illegal. Furthermore, the city stated it would not hire the 300 potential probationary firefighters stonewalled by the court and discrimination claims.

In the time that Judge Garaufis blocked the hiring, editorials took note of the ludicrous solutions offered by Garaufis to make the field level.

“One would let the FDNY hire by picking at random from a pool of candidates that matched the racial and ethnic makeup of all the people who took the test. The pool would be composed of the 2,500 top scorers, with two exceptions: the lowest-ranked whites would be replaced by the highest-ranking minorities below the 2,500 cutoff.”

“Other plans blessed by the judge would use hard percentages – essentially, outright quotas – to circumvent test rankings for blacks and Hispanics.”
Quota alarm: Judge is forcing city to choose between race-based evils in FDNY hiring, Daily News

Nick Garaufis, quota king, New York Post

“In one proposal, the city could hire a class that reflected the racial demographics of the applicant pool (60% white; 17% black; 18% Hispanic) using any criteria it chooses. The remaining 5% would be Asian and others, but the breakdown would not be mandated.”

“Another applicant-flow method would allow the immediate hiring of a class that is about 80% white, but the city would be required to appoint blacks and Hispanics in the following class that reflected the pool’s demographics, regardless of exam results.”

Garaufis acknowledged those methods sound like racial quotas.” [bold mine]
Compromise lets FDNY hire 300 probationary firefighters from ‘discriminatory’ Exam 6019, Daily News

City Forgoes New Fire Class, Wall Street Journal

To his credit, and maybe on the heels of the Islamic community center protests, Mayor Bloomberg used his weekly radio show to support what many firefighters in the city, and across the nation, endorse: “I want to make sure that if my kids are in that building, I want the best-trained, smartest firefighter that we can possibly have coming through that door,”
City Rejects Judge’s Solutions In FDNY Discrimination Suit, New York 1
City Rejects Judge’s Alternative Hiring Proposals for FDNY, WNYC

Both Bloomberg and Cardozo are correct, surmising that quotas will have an effect on having the best – mentally and physically – running lines and throwing ladders. However, they don’t come close to a article that Dave LeBlanc shared from the American Thinker. In his article “What The NY Jets Can Do That The FDNY Cannot“, Jack Cashill makes a very good comparison between fielding a NFL team and the FDNY.

“Unlike most other professions, especially firefighting, the coaches are free to choose whomever they like for whatever reasons they like. They are certainly under no imperative to hire women. None dare try out. As to handicaps, these merely get a player sent home in a hurry. The coaches do not attempt to field teams that “look like New York.” I doubt if they even keep statistics on race, let alone gender or sexual orientation. The selection process has a massively disparate impact against certain minority groups — Hispanics and Asian-Americans, most notably — and even against African-Americans in the quarterbacking and kicking positions. Jets QB Mark Sanchez is a “minority” in the way that Ricardo Montalban was.”

Cash takes note that no one complains about discrimination in the NFL. No one cries in outrage over a lack of Hispanics on the offensive line; no one champions the plight of the Asians to be part of the pass rush. And in pointing out that obvious notion, he does the same about the safety of New Yorkers from fire,

“In every single American city today, “diversity” trumps safety. Scarcely a day goes by without the media trumpeting lawsuits that waste money and emasculate fire departments. In Chicago, one reads that because of unwelcome results, the city’s firefighter applicant test is now pass/fail. In Kansas City, two women sue the fire department, demanding, among other things, that they be recognized as having the same firefighting ability as men.

In Oakland, a headline reads “a New Century Brings Progress and Hope.” In this case, “progress” means that 13% of Oakland’s firefighters are women and 56% are “people of color.” Whether they can fight fires is irrelevant. In Minneapolis, San Francisco, and Miami, through a combination of litigation and intimidation, women represent more than 10 percent of the city’s firefighters. Fire chiefs who protested are no longer fire chiefs.

To its credit, the FDNY resists, but the federal regulators, the courts, and the media conspire against the Department. As reported in the New York Post earlier this year, a group of women threatened to sue the FDNY, warning the judge “that if the new requirements place a greater emphasis on strength, more women will be excluded from joining the department.””

The city did well to refuse all of Garaufis’ options, even though they dashed the dreams of 300 hopefuls. The city and mayor also set themselves up for major backpedaling when the medical leave rate and overtime costs rise. Detractors will say that if the FDNY is worried about closing firehouses they should have picked one of Judge Garaufis’ hiring options. Unfortunately the true measure, the reasoning behind the test, will be lost in the corrected results. Being African-American, Hispanic, or Alaskan Eskimo has no impact on one’s ability to be the Control firefighter and make a proper hoseline estimate. Being Gay, Lesbian, Heterosexual or a Benedictine monk has no impact on one’s ability to assist the first due OVM at a fire in a Queen-Anne style private dwelling. What does matter is the mental acuity and physical fitness each of those persons has to properly pass the test and do the assigned jobs (look them up, there are SOPs for the Control firefighter and for Queen Anne dwellings – nowhere is there a reference to the firefighter’s race, sex and religion.)

Keep an eye on this, not necessarily for the FDNY but for your department. Soon, mark my words, we’ll see a discrimination suit filed because someone didn’t get assigned to the Rescue.

I think Frank Ricci would agree.

The Post did identify, however, one fireman brave enough to say the obvious. “It’s a physical job. It requires physical strength,” said Deputy Chief Paul Mannix. “People ask why there aren’t more women in the Fire Department. Why aren’t there more women in the NFL or Major League Baseball?”





You are not authorized to see this part
Please, insert a valid App IDotherwise your plugin won't work.

4 Comments

  • Dave LeBlanc says:

    Qualified is qualified. And that should be the end of the argument. This isn’t Little League where everyone now gets a trophy so we don’t hurt someone’s feelings. Or a High School in Massachusetts where there are no longer team Captain’s because it make everyone else feel bad.

    This is a job where people’s live are at stake. A “missed tackle” here means someone could get hurt or die. Race and gender don’t matter as long as the individual can do the job.

    Great piece Bill…..

  • That’s because they don’t want hurt feelings. People only care about the service, as long as someone shows up they don’t care what we look like. It’s not the people we serve that this matters to, it’s the employees that feel that they have been held back because of their ethnic origin. It’s not that at all, it’s really because they have no desire to excel due to the belief that they are owed something, so they skate by hoping to pick up a promotion/job/raise/etc based on ethnicity alone.

  • R-Fr says:

    “Soon, mark my words, well see a discrimination suit filed because someone didnt get assigned to the Rescue.”

    This has already happened and will be coming soon to a firehouse near you!

  • Darren says:

    What a joke, you pass the test, the top marks get the jobs, we have experienced issues in my department, the woman were allowed to take the physical tests twice. So basically I am not what they want as I am white, fit, tall and male…..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

background image Blogger Img

Backstep Firefighter

“To provide a point of critical thought about certain acts and events in the fire service while incorporating behavioral education and commentary in a referenced format.”

FE Talk: Humpday Hangout

Comments
Bill Carey
What is Experience?
You're correct Ed. What did we do with that experience? Did we take as many lessons from as we could or did we simply file it away as a run in the logbook. Thank you, Bill
2014-10-30 12:55:18
Ed
What is Experience?
Excellent post. The same question may be framed for other than working on the nozzle (e.g., if delivering pump operator training). In addition, even if you went to a lot of fires on the nozzle or as the first in company officer, what did you do with that experience? Reflection and integration of the experience…
2014-10-30 12:37:50
Bill Carey
Wanted: Honest Discernment in Our Fire Service Discussions
Thank you Ed.
2014-10-22 14:26:50
Ed Hartin
Wanted: Honest Discernment in Our Fire Service Discussions
Excellent article Bill!
2014-10-14 12:47:14
Ron Ayotte
Complacency and Awareness: History Lessons from the Mog and Rangers
Bill.. I agree with Tony C. The situations we respond to sometimes reuire that we tune and tweak SOPs and SOGs "on the fly" in order to complete the tasks given. Fire doesn't care what is stated in our SOPs/SOGs.
2014-10-11 22:14:29
AFTDIMage
BostonFireGearImage
Plugin from the creators ofBrindes Personalizados :: More at PlulzWordpress Plugins