RESOLUTION SUPPORTING JUSTICE FOR WARDS COVE WORKERS ACT

WHEREAS, in 1989, the U.S. Supreme Court in Wards Cove Packing Co. v. Atonio overturned a long standing decision, Griggs v. Duke Power (1971), on the distribution of burden of proof upon litigants in disparate impact cases;

WHEREAS, Congress introduced HR 1, the Civil Rights and Womens Equity Act of 1991, to overturn Wards Cove Packing Co. v. Atonio and to codify the principle set by Griggs v. Duke Power;

WHEREAS, Congress passed and President George Bush signed into law the Civil Rights Act of 1991 toward the end of 1991;

WHEREAS, the Civil Rights Act of 1991 specifically overturns the 1989 Supreme Court decision in Wards Cove and codifies Griggs v. Duke Power Co.;

WHEREAS, the Civil Rights Act of 1991 contained a specific exemption for the Wards Cove v. Atonio litigation from the Griggs standard;

WHEREAS, some 2000 Asian Pacific Islander Wards Cove workers of Filipino, Samoan, Chinese, and Japanese ethnicity are affected by the exemption;

WHEREAS, the Philadelphia Bar Association Board of Governors voted in 1991 to support passage of HR 1;

WHEREAS, now pending in Congress are bills (now known as S. 1962 and HR 3748) entitled Justice for Wards Cove Workers Act to allow the courts to apply the Civil Rights Act of 1991 to the Wards Cove worker claims;

WHEREAS, support for the Justice For Wards Cove Workers Act is not to be construed as a position on the retroactive application of the Civil Rights Act of 1991 to pending cases;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Philadelphia Bar Association supports passage of the Justice for Wards Cove Workers Act (now known as S. 1962 and HR 3748);

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Chancellor of the Philadelphia Bar Association is authorized to take all necessary measures to support passage, including writing letters to the Pennsylvania Congressional delegation urging them to cosponsor the Justice for Wards Cove Workers Act.

PHILADELPHIA BAR ASSOCIATION
BOARD OF GOVERNORS
ADOPTED: March 26, 1992