Suit: Black and Latino Students Deprived of Sports Equity

Some 70 students marched from their schools in the South Bronx to Lower Manhattan to attend last week’s rally. (Photo by Sneha Dey via City Limits)

A class-action lawsuit filed by New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI) accuses the NYC Department of Education and the Public Schools Athletic League of depriving Black and Latino students of sports equity, writes Sneha Dey in City Limits.

The case cites over a hundred public schools without any sports teams, of which Black and Latino students are twice as likely to attend. In fact, 17,323 black and Latino students attend a school that offers zero PSAL sports. It also says, in fiscal year 2014, PSAL spent 14 percent less on the average Black or Latino student than they spent on the average student of any other race.

NYLPI joined IntegrateNYC and the Fair Play Coalition at a rally June 21 outside Tweed Courthouse in announcing the lawsuit. Around 70 students marched from schools in the South Bronx to the demonstration in Lower Manhattan. NYLPI senior staff attorney Melissa Iachan, the lead lawyer on the case, explained why they decided to sue.

“No matter what source of activism and advocacy has been going on, nothing has changed,” says Iachan. That’s why she feels a lawsuit was the next step that needed to be taken.

Hear from some of the student plaintiffs and read more on related legislation introduced in the City Council, at City Limits.

In an opinion piece that appeared in the publication, one of the student plaintiffs, Matt Diaz, writes: “Every year segregated high schools ask the PSAL for more sports teams and are denied. Why is that allowed to happen?” Read his article at City Limits.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*