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Soroka v. Dayton Hudson Corp.

1 Cal. Rptr. 2d 77 (1991)

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Soroka v. Dayton Hudson Corp.

California Court of Appeal

1 Cal. Rptr. 2d 77 (1991)

Facts

As a condition of employment, applicants for the position of store security officer (SSO) at Target Stores were required to pass a psychological screening test called Psychscreen. Psychscreen consisted of 704 true or false questions, including invasive and personal questions about the applicant’s religious beliefs, sex life, and sexual orientation. Sibi Soroka (plaintiff) applied for an SSO position and took the Psychscreen test. Soroka was hired by Target but was upset by the intrusive nature of the test’s questions. Soroka and two other applicants whom Target did not hire filed a class action against Target Stores’ parent company, Dayton Hudson Corporation (defendant), alleging that the test violated their and other applicants’ right to privacy under the California Constitution. The class action sought, among other things, a preliminary injunction prohibiting Target from using the Psychscreen test while the lawsuit was pending. Target argued that the test was intended to screen out applicants who were emotionally unstable or who would not follow company procedures. Target’s SSOs were not armed but did carry handcuffs and were authorized to apprehend and arrest suspected shoplifters. Target offered evidence that the use of Psychscreen had improved the overall quality and performance of its SSOs. However, there was no evidence that an applicant’s religious beliefs or sexual orientation generally affected her emotional stability or her ability to perform the duties of an SSO. The trial court declined to enter a preliminary injunction, and Soroka appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Reardon, J.)

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