Chuck Ross, Daily Caller, April 10, 2014
A federal appeals court judge ruled against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, saying the agency was hypocritical in its lawsuit against a test prep company.
“In this case the EEOC sued the defendants for using the same type of background check that the EEOC itself uses,” wrote Raymond Kethledge, a 6th circuit court of appeals judge.
Kethledge joined two other judges who voted unanimously against the EEOC, which was appealing a ruling from a district court.
The EEOC had alleged that Kaplan Higher Education Corp. engaged in disparate impact by using credit checks in the job application process. Those credit checks, the EEOC contended, unfairly screened out black applicants.
But the appeals court found issue with the methods used by the agency to analyze Kaplan’s hiring decisions.
Kethledge pointed to the EEOC’s personnel handbook as evidence that the agency itself finds value in credit checks. The handbook “recites that “[o]verdue just debts increase temptation to commit illegal or unethical acts as a means of gaining funds to meet financial obligations.”
“[T]he EEOC runs credit checks on applications for 84 of the agency’s 97 positions,” wrote Kethledge in Wednesday’s court opinion.
After a string cases where Kaplan executives and other administrative staff had stolen funds from students, Kaplan instituted a series of job screening measures, including credit checks on executives, accountants, and other staff members who deal with student finances.