United States v. City of Lubbock, Texas
www.LubbockPDSettlement.com

Frequently Asked Questions

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1. What is this lawsuit about?

In its lawsuit, the United States alleged that the City had engaged in unlawful employment practices that deprived or tended to deprive Hispanics and women of employment opportunities because of their national origin and/or sex, in violation of Section 703(a) of Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a). Specifically, the United States alleged that, in its hiring process for probationary police officers from January 2010 to June 2015, the City used a written examination that had an adverse impact on Hispanic applicants and a physical fitness test that had an adverse impact on female applicants. The United States alleged that neither test was sufficiently job related or consistent with business necessity. The United States did not, however, allege that the City had intentionally discriminated against any person or group of persons.

In the interest of resolving this matter and promoting the purposes of Title VII, the United States and the City voluntarily entered into a Consent Decree. The Court found the terms of the Consent Decree to be fair, lawful, and reasonable, and entered the Consent Decree as final on November 14, 2016.

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2. What happened at the Fairness Hearing on November 14, 2016?

The Fairness Hearing on the Terms of the Consent Decree was held before the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas on November 14, 2016. The United States and the City argued that the terms of this Consent Decree were fair, lawful, and reasonable. There were no substantive objections to the Consent Decree. At the end of the hearing, the Court found the Consent Decree to be fair, lawful, and reasonable. The Court entered the Consent Decree as final on November 14, 2016.

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3. What individual awards are available to Hispanic and female victims of the City's alleged discrimination?

The Consent Decree describes the awards that will be available to the victims of the City’s alleged discrimination. Because the Consent Decree resolves the discriminatory impact of two separate testing devices used by the City to hire probationary police officers, two different groups of victims may be entitled to relief.

  • If you identified as Hispanic when applying to be a probationary police officer and you did not pass the written examination administered by the Lubbock Police Department between January 16, 2010, and June 6, 2015, you may be entitled to:
    • A cash award of back pay to make up for some of the wages lost due to discrimination. Specifically, the City has agreed to provide $326,250 in back pay to be distributed amongst eligible Hispanic claimants.
    • Consideration for a position as a probationary police officer with the Lubbock Police Department, including retroactive seniority.
    • Retroactive seniority, including retroactive pension benefits, for up to 11 police officers. This retroactive seniority may not be used for shift-bidding or to satisfy any applicable probationary periods or any time-in-grade requirements associated with promotion eligibility.
  • If you identified as female when applying to be a probationary police officer and you did not pass the physical fitness test administered by the Lubbock Police Department between January 16, 2010, and June 6, 2015, you may be entitled to:
    • A cash award of back pay to make up for some of the wages lost due to discrimination. Specifically, the City has agreed to provide $398,750 in back pay to be distributed amongst eligible female claimants.
    • Consideration for a position as a probationary police officer with the Lubbock Police Department, including retroactive seniority.
    • Retroactive seniority, including retroactive pension benefits, for up to 13 police officers. This retroactive seniority may not be used for shift-bidding or to satisfy any applicable probationary periods or any time-in-grade requirements associated with promotion eligibility.

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4. Will Hispanic and female applicants automatically be eligible to receive an award?

No. Only applicants who identified as Hispanic when applying and who were disqualified by the City’s use of the written examination and applicants who identified as female when applying and who were disqualified by the City’s use of the physical fitness test from January 2010 to June 2015 may be eligible to receive an award. Hispanic applicants who were not hired for reasons unrelated to the written examination, and female applicants who were not hired for reasons unrelated to the physical fitness test will not be eligible to receive an award. Please see the terms of the Consent Decree for specific eligibility criteria for monetary and/or hiring relief.

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5. What should I do to be considered for an individual award?

The deadline for submitting an Interest-in-Relief Form was January 30, 2017. Following a hearing on September 19, 2017, the Court approved the Final Individual Relief Awards Lists on September 22, 2017. Only claimants whose claimant identification numbers are on the Final Individual Relief Awards Lists are eligible to receive back pay and/or priority hiring relief.

In order to receive the individual relief for which the Court determined the claimant to be eligible, the claimant must fully execute the Acceptance of Individual Relief and Release of Claims form and the required tax withholding forms, and return them by mail or email to GCG by November 1, 2017. Failure to return fully executed forms by this date may result in the claimant forfeiting relief.

It is important that we have up-to-date contact information for potentially eligible individuals. Please contact us by email at info@LubbockPDSettlement.com or send a letter to Lubbock Police Department Settlement, c/o GCG, PO Box 9349, Dublin, OH 43017-4249 if your contact information changes.

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6. What happens next?


Accepting Individual Relief

The Court approved the Final Individual Relief Awards Lists on September 22, 2017. The Final Back Pay Awards List identifies each claimant whom the Court determined is eligible for back pay and the amount of back pay to be awarded. The Final Priority Hire Claimant List identifies each claimant whom the Court determined is eligible to pursue priority hiring relief.

On October 2, 2017, each claimant whom the Court determined to be eligible for individual relief was sent a Notice of Individual Relief Award via mail and email. Claimants were also provided an Acceptance of Individual Relief and Release of Claims form and required Tax Withholding Forms.

In order to receive the individual relief for which the Court determined the claimant to be eligible, the claimant must fully execute the Acceptance of Individual Relief and Release of Claims form and the required tax withholding forms, and return them by mail or email to GCG by November 1, 2017. Failure to return fully executed forms by this date may result in the claimant forfeiting relief.

Once the period for claimants to return Acceptance of Individual Relief and Release of Claims forms has passed, the process for executing relief (i.e., distributing back pay awards and processing persons eligible for priority hiring) will begin.

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