employment - lie detectors - firefighters
City of Pittsburgh v. Bachner et al. - Commonwealth Court - November 30, 2006
Applicants for firefighter positions with city challenged "just cause" determinations under 53 P.S. 23493.1(a) to reject their applications, and the use of lie detector tests involved in the city's passing over their applications for employment as firefighters
Held, just cause provision gives a right to placement on hiring list, unless there is just cause for disqualification, but just cause provision does not give candidates the right to challenge information gathering procedures to determine if just cause exists.
Here, the applicants' right to placement was affected ony by information they provided, and they retained the right to challenge their disqualifications and argue that they are not supported by just cause. The court discussed the Lie Detector Test Law, 18 Pa. C.S. 7321, which generally prohibits the use of lie detectors in employment situations, except in matters involving public law enforcement personnel or people whose job gives them access to narcotics or dangerour drugs, 18 Pa. C.S. 7321(b). The latter was conceded in this case.