Ruling in the Griggs v. Duke Power Co. Case

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Synopsis: Duke Power, a company being sued by its ethnic minority employees this included Willie Griggs. Griggs would be filing the class action law suit along with several of his fellow co-workers for unfair processes in which attaining a promotion or higher paying position was met by having a high school diploma and undergoing IQ testing. Prior to the civil rights act Blacks were only allowed to work in the company’s labor department, which happened to harbor its lowest paying positions as well. After the implementation of IQ testing and the requirement of holding a high school diploma it was found that Blacks were being selected at a lower rate for higher positions than their white counterparts. Considered the first case of its type Griggs v. Duke Power Co. was taken before the Supreme Court of the United States where it was found that the requirements were not relevant to an employee’s ability to perform a job. Therefore it was ruled that Duke Power Co. promotion practices were discriminating against its black employees. The Supreme Court found that in adding a requirement for promotion within a company the requirements need to be “reasonably related” to the job for which the test is required thus bringing into question test validity. The question is begged, “Can employment practices be discriminatory if there is no intent to discriminate?” Although the Duke Power Company never intended to discriminate in their internal transferring and promoting procedures they were

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