Mariner’s Claim Dismissed
Friday, February 15, 2008
In an unpublished decision, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a claim filed by a mariner against various pilot boards based on the statute of limitations and failure to meet the age restriction. In the instant case, plaintiff mariner, who is an African-American, tried for a number of years to be accepted by the Crescent River Port Pilots Association and the Board of River Port Pilots Commissioners for the Port of New Orleans as an apprentice pilot. Eventually, he brought this action alleging discrimination on the basis of race. The court found that his older claims were barred by the statute of limitations and he could not succeed with the more recent claims because by then he was at least 40 years old, which exceeds the age eligibility for new apprentice pilots. The court took this action reluctantly, noting defendants’ “allegedly deficient record of including African-Americans in their number.” Mitchell v. Crescent River Port Pilots Association, No. 07-30525 (5th Cir., February 14, 2008).