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What would be evidence that the county had a valid BFOQ?

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The Case:
The Milwaukee County Juvenile Detention Center started a new policy that required each unit of the facility to be staffed at all times by at least one officer of the same gender as the detainees housed at a unit. The purpose of the policy, administrators said, was to reduce the likelihood of sexual abuse of juveniles by offers of the other gender. Because there were many more male units in the center than female units, the policy had the effect of reducing the number of shifts for female officers and increasing the number of shifts for men. Two female officers sued for gender discrimination. The district court held for the county, finding that the policy of assignment was based on a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) and so it was not illegal gender discrimination. The female officers appealed.

What would be evidence that the county had a valid BFOQ?

[Henry v Milwaukee County, 539 F.3d 573 (7th Cir. 2008)]

In responding be sure to:
- Discuss and define gender discrimination.
- Discuss the elements of BFOQ (Bona Fide Occupational Qualification) and how this defense relates to the above case.

Solution Preview

Gender discrimination occurs when two "classes" of individuals are treated differently on the basis of gender. This is, generally, identified as "disparate treatment". A situation in which one class of individuals is treated differently than another when dealing with the same issue ( such as work assignments) simply on the basis of race, sexual orientation, or religion. Disparate treatment, then, means that different classes of individuals are treated differently regarding a particular issues (such as job assignments) simply because they don't seem to "fit the bill" (meaning, are not desirable because of some "perceived" limitation).

In this ...

Solution Summary

What evidence a country would have a valid BFOQ are determined.