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A long standing written exam for police officers looking to move up the public servant ladder is coming under fire after a group of minority officer called its basis into question.

A lawsuit filed by several minority law enforcement members believe that a test used to attain the rank of sergeant discriminated against Black and Hispanic test takers; minorities consistently score lower on the exam than their white counterparts.

Score over an eight year period, from 200 to 2008, were reviewed by the Justice Department to see if the claim held any validity.

Results rendered showed that only 73% of Black and 77% of Hispanic officer that took the exam passed while 89& of White officers were successful, allowing for an uneven promotion margin to be created.

Even when passing, minority officers were least likely due to the fact that promotions are granted to officer that have seniority accompanied by the highest test scores.

The lawsuit is demanding that the exam be discontinued as a promotion mechanism and that anyone adversely affected by it be given back pay, promotions, and retroactive seniority.

Except state police, every law enforcement system in New Jersey uses the same exam to promote officers.

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