BALTIMORE COUNTY — Baltimore County has agreed to pay $2 million as part of a settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice, which alleged unintentional hiring discrimination by the Baltimore County Police Department.
In August 2019, the U.S. Department of Justice filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against Baltimore County and the Baltimore County Police Department.
The lawsuit alleged that the department engaged in a pattern or practice of unintentional employment discrimination against African-American applicants for entry-level police officer and cadet positions between 2009 and 2016 by making hiring decisions based on the results of hiring examinations that were not job-related and that disproportionately excluded African-American applicants.
As part of the settlement agreement, the United States acknowledged that the practices in question were established prior to the current administration and that the Olszewski administration is committed to resolving the issues alleged in the complaint.
As part of the settlement agreement, Baltimore County will:
- Refrain from further use of the allegedly unlawful written examinations
- Make 20 priority hires
- Provide back pay
The county will also be creating a settlement fund of $2 million to be distributed as back pay to eligible claimants, and will hire a claims administrator to manage it.