Christian Murdock, The Gazette
Colorado Springs police fitness test discriminated against women, judge rules in lawsuit.
The city of Colorado Springs has approved a $2.5 million settlement for 12 female police officers who say their careers were harmed by a physical aptitude test that discriminated against women.
The agreement comes six months after a federal judge ruled in the women’s favor, upholding their claims of civil rights violations.
In the lawsuit, filed in May 2015 in U.S. District Court in Denver, the plaintiffs argued that mandatory police testing imposed disproportionate challenges on women over the age of 40. Nearly 40 percent of the department’s women in that demographic failed the test the first time around, causing them to be stripped of their duties and placed on alternate assignments, the lawsuit said.
At the conclusion of a bench trial in July, U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch concluded the test “shamed and ostracized” the 12 plaintiffs – many of them decorated officers with decades of service – while providing “meaningless” results.
Plaintiffs attorney Ian Kalmanowitz and two of the plaintiffs declined to comment when reached by phone Friday, saying they weren’t yet prepared to make public statements about the settlement. City spokeswoman Jamie Fabos said in a news release she wouldn’t be accepting interview requests about the case.