(CN) – Two Chicago police officers were unable to convince the 7th Circuit that they faced discrimination when they had to take their promotion exams while deployed in El Salvador and Iraq.
Judge Easterbrook said the city extended them the same opportunity to take the test as non-military officers.
Juan Sandoval and Sidney Pennix asked to take the test while they were deployed – Sandoval in El Salvador and Pennix in Iraq. They sat for the exam in Ernst & Young’s nearest offices (San Salvador for Sandoval, Frankfurt for Pennix).
“Both accepted this offer without protest; both passed and were placed in the eligibility list; and both filed suit as soon as the first person was promoted from that list,” Easterbrook summarized.
Sandoval and Pennix said they would have done better and been promoted earlier had the tests been administered on base, rather than in the Ernst & Young offices.
The district court granted summary judgment for Chicago, finding that the city had not discriminated against the officers.
The Chicago-based federal appeals court agreed.
“Because Chicago extended the same terms available to persons not in military service, it complied with its obligations,” Easterbrook wrote.
“Congress is free to require employers to do more – and perhaps Chicago would have done more voluntarily had Sandoval or Pennix asked for on-base administration of the test – but the statute on the books forbids discrimination without requiring accommodation.”