A retired St. Louis firefighter is asking the aldermanic public safety committee to investigate allegations that African American firefighters were discriminated against in promotional tests.
He asked the aldermen to intervene because of a federal court ruling: U.S. District Judge Rodney Sippel recently dismissed claims made by four African American firefighters that the City had intentionally discriminated against African American firefighters in the promotional testing process.
Judge Sippel wrote that the plaintiffs “failed to introduce any (his emphasis) evidence of intentional discrimination. The FIRE plaintiffs advance several vague, conclusory, and incoherent allegations of intentional discrimination, but allegations are not sufficient evidence to withstand a motion for summary judgment.”
Dismissed by the court, plaintiffs’ supporters will now try to publicize their allegations at the board of aldermen.
There is a smoldering racial divide within the St. Louis Fire Department that is not going to be healed by more lawsuits and finger pointing. Only people of good will, working together, will make things better.
If there are such people in the Fire Department, they should step forward now.