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How fair is the LA Fire Department’s current hiring practices?




Mayor Eric Garcetti says the Los Angeles Fire Department will not hire another firefighter until the RAND Corp. can look at reforming the recruitment process.
Mayor Eric Garcetti says the Los Angeles Fire Department will not hire another firefighter until the RAND Corp. can look at reforming the recruitment process.
Photo by ATOMIC Hot Links via Flickr Creative Commons

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The Los Angeles Fire Department’s hiring practices have been under scrutiny due to calls of mismanagement and possible nepotism. Responding to those accusations, Mayor Garcetti suspended hiring in March so that reforms could be implemented. Rand Corporation was hired to create a review, but it’s behind scheudule, and there’s a demand for fresh firefighters -- now.

In July, no longer willing to wait, city officials implemented the lottery system in order to narrow down the thousands of applicants that go to the next level of hiring. Robert Holmes, a white applicant, did not move forward. He filed a complaint saying that sampling an applicant’s ethnicity before they test, doesn’t sound right to him. The City of LA says the lottery was its best choice to reduce the pool of applicants. The state is investigating whether or not the use of the lottery system is legal. Does the proportional lottery violate state anti-discrimination laws? Is the lottery system the best choice?

Guests:

Joshua Thompson, Senior Staff Attorney, Pacific Legal Foundation - described as a public interest legal organization that fights for limited government, property rights, individual rights and a balanced approach to environmental protection

Kim West-Faulcon, the James P. Bradley Chair in Constitutional Law at Loyola Law School