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Bias complaint won’t fly if everyone was equally qualified

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Job applicants or employees looking for promotions who think they were passed over because of a protected characteristic like race or sex generally have to show that they were the best, most qualified candidate.

Recent case: Johnny Johnson, who is black, wanted a promotion at the correctional facility where he worked.

When he lost out to other applicants who were not black, he sued. Johnson claimed he was the most qualified applicant and wasn’t picked because he is black.

But the court looked at all the applications and discovered that the selected candidates and Johnson had the same amount of experience. Because Johnson didn’t offer any evidence race was a factor, the court refused to second-guess the decision to pick someone else from an equally qualified candidate pool. (Johnson v. David Wade Correctional Facility, No. 10-30440, 5th Cir., 2010)

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