Carson v. American Brands, Inc.

450 U.S. 79 (1981)


Carson (P) was a class of present and former black seasonal employees that alleged that American Brands (D) had discriminated against them in hiring and promotion. The parties negotiated a settlement and moved the court to approve it. D would have been required to give P hiring and seniority preferences and to fill one-third of supervisory positions with qualified blacks. D expressly denied any violation of equal employment law. The court denied the settlement as preferential treatment according to race was a violation of Title VII. The court of appeals dismissed an appeal for want of jurisdiction; the consent decree was neither a collateral order (1291) nor an interlocutory order refusing an injunction (1292(a)(1)). The Supreme Court granted certiorari.