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White Firefighters Awarded Court Settlement After Claiming Racial Bias

12 white firefighters of Buffalo who alleged racial discrimination were awarded $1.2 million on Tuesday.

The firefighters sued back in 2007 because they allegedly were looked over for a promotion due to their race and claimed the city wanted to promote more Black firefighters, WGRZ reported. The lawsuit stated that the city purposely and illegally allowed promotional lists to expire because minorities didn’t perform well on civil service tests. They believe had the lists not lapsed, the fire department would have given all 12 firefighters promotions.

The Supreme Court agreed with the Buffalo employees and ruled against the city. The crew was initially awarded $2.8 million, but it was reduced to $1.6 million after an appeal. The Appellate Division of State Supreme Court sustained the court’s ruling and the Buffalo Law Department were able to agree on $1.2 million dispersed to the firefighters according to the legal documents filed.

The former city employees were paid $550,000 immediately and will receive $650,000 at a later date for damages according to the Buffalo News.

The million dollar settlement was signed by Mayor Byron W. Brown and approved by Common Council.

The spokesperson for the city Michael J. DeGeorge added, “We are satisfied that the matter has been resolved.”

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