Mark Cohen, Former Federal Prosecutor, Chosen to Monitor FDNY

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Former federal prosecutor Mark Cohen has been chosen as the federal court monitor who will be chosen to supervise the FDNY, the Daily News is reporting.

As we've been reporting over the past year, the city continues to be in hot water with the federal government for not enforcing Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in regards to the fire department. The FDNY is about 95 percent white, and U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis ruled that it's a "bastion of white privilege." He recently ordered that a court appointed monitor would need to oversee the fire department's hiring, promotions, and human resources, perhaps for as long as a decade.

That person is now Cohen. The last time we were in court, Judge Garaufis ordered the city and the federal government to propose three names of who should be the monitor. But the News says Cohen "was not proposed by the Vulcan Society of black firefighters, the city Law Department or the Justice Department which had submitted possible candidates. Instead, the judge selected Cohen, noting in his order that neither the city nor the feds had objected to his candidacy."

We're reaching out to the Vulcan Society to get their thoughts. As for the city, according to the News, they write: "As the Court noted, the city had no objection to Mr. Cohen's candidacy for appointment...However, the city does not agree that any monitor is warranted. We will be appealing the partial judgment and remedia order as soon as that order has been entered, which the court has indicated is forthcoming."

sthrasher@villagevoice.com | @steven_thrasher

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