University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Schaefer v. Tannian EE-MI-0188
Docket / Court 2:73-cv-39943 ( E.D. Mich. )
State/Territory Michigan
Case Type(s) Equal Employment
Special Collection Private Employment Class Actions
Case Summary
On April 10, 1973, female police officers filed a complaint under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e, against their superior officers and the Detroit Police Department in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The plaintiffs contended that ... read more >
On April 10, 1973, female police officers filed a complaint under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e, against their superior officers and the Detroit Police Department in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The plaintiffs contended that their separate divisions and unequal pay were illegal under Title VII.

Before they brought the suit, female police officers were restricted to working only in the "Women's Division," which was its own separate unit of the Police Department. They were able to do investigative work, which was similar to work being done by male detectives, but the women were not given detective rank and were paid less that their male counterparts. Women were also unable to take the detectives' exam.

The PACER docket is incomplete, as it starts in 1989, but it does indicate that a class was certified at some point prior.

On June 7, 1974, the court (Judge D. J. Freeman) granted partial summary judgment in favor of the plaintiffs and ordered that the Detroit Police Department take affirmative action and meet quotas for female officers to eliminate discrimination. Schaefer v. Tannian, 1974 WL 3027 (E.D. Mich. 1974). The court (Judge Freeman) also retroactively awarded seniority to women who would have been qualified for officer rank but were denied it because of their gender. Schaefer v. Tannian, 1978 WL 133 (E.D. Mich. 1978). On June 1, 1992, the court (Judge Paul V. Gadola) awarded back pay to female officers who had been denied promotions or raises. Schaefer v. Tannian, 793 F.Supp. 150 (E.D. Mich. 1992). This case was closed in 1998.

Julianne Nowicki - 07/25/2010


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Content of Injunction
Comply with advertising/recruiting requirements
Follow recruitment, hiring, or promotion protocols
Retroactive Senority
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
Discrimination-area
Hiring
Pay / Benefits
Promotion
Seniority
Testing
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
General
Disparate Treatment
Pattern or Practice
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Title VII (including PDA), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e
Defendant(s) Detroit Police Department
Plaintiff Description Female police officers working for the Detroit Police Department.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 1998
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Megacases, Diversity, and the Elusive Goal of Workplace Reform
Written: Mar. 01, 2008
By: Nancy Levit (University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law)
Citation: 49 B.C. L. Rev. 367 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Second Generation Employment Discrimination: A Structural Approach
By: Susan Sturm (Columbia Law School)
Citation: 101 Colum. L. Rev. 458 (2001)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
2:73-cv-39943-PVG-VMM (E.D. Mich.) 04/08/1998
EE-MI-0188-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Opinion 06/07/1974 (1974 WL 3027) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0005.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Opinion 06/21/1976 (1976 WL 577) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0006.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Opinion 08/27/1976 (1976 WL 621) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0007.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Opinion 08/04/1978 (1978 WL 125) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0008.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Opinion 05/07/1991 (762 F.Supp. 716) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 06/01/1992 (793 F.Supp. 146) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 04/17/1995 (1995 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 11816) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0009.pdf | LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: LexisNexis
Opinion 08/07/1995 (895 F.Supp. 175) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 09/26/1995 (902 F.Supp. 746) (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges Freeman, Ralph McKenzie (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0005 | EE-MI-0188-0006 | EE-MI-0188-0007 | EE-MI-0188-0008
Gadola, Paul V. (E.D. Mich.)
EE-MI-0188-0001 | EE-MI-0188-0002 | EE-MI-0188-0003 | EE-MI-0188-0004 | EE-MI-0188-0009 | EE-MI-0188-9000
Morgan, Virginia M. (E.D. Mich.) [Magistrate]
EE-MI-0188-0009
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Runyan, John R. Jr. (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0001 | EE-MI-0188-0002 | EE-MI-0188-0003 | EE-MI-0188-0004 | EE-MI-0188-0009 | EE-MI-0188-9000
Simpson, Lucia H. (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0001 | EE-MI-0188-0003 | EE-MI-0188-0004 | EE-MI-0188-0009 | EE-MI-0188-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Feldman, Bernard (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0002
Hayles, Terri L. (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0002
Moore, James M. (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0002 | EE-MI-0188-0003 | EE-MI-0188-0004 | EE-MI-0188-0009 | EE-MI-0188-9000
Van Lopik, Nancy J. (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0001 | EE-MI-0188-0004 | EE-MI-0188-9000
Other Lawyers Smith, Eleanor C. (Michigan)
EE-MI-0188-0003 | EE-MI-0188-9000

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