What Is a Non Merit Factor ?
'Non-merit factors' are those factors that relate exclusively to a personal or social characteristic or trait and are not substantially related to successful performance of the duties of the position.
Any person who appeals alleging discrimination based on a non-merit factor must name the specific non-merit factor(s) on which discrimination is alleged to be based. No hearing shall be granted nor evidence heard relative to discrimination based on unspecified non-merit factors."
Los Angeles County Civil Service Rules Rule 4.07 provides that a petitioner shall be entitled to be represented by counsel; testify under oath; subpoena witnesses; cross-examine witnesses; cross-examine all employees of the Commission who have investigated the matters; impeach any witness; present affidavits, exhibits, and other evidence; and argue the case.
The hearing is formal, but with relaxed rules of evidence. Rule 4.10 provides: "Evidence. A. the hearing shall be formal, but need not be conducted according to technical rules relating to evidence and witnesses.
Any relevant evidence shall be admitted if it is the sort of evidence on which responsible persons are accustomed to rely in the conduct of serious affairs, regardless of the existence of any common law or statutory rule which might make improper the admission of such evidence or objection in civil actions. B. Hearsay evidence may be admitted for any purpose, but shall not be sufficient in itself to support a finding unless it would be admissible over objection in civil actions.
The rules of privilege and of official or judicial notice shall be effective to the same extent as in civil actions. Irrelevant and repetitious evidence shall be excluded. Oral evidence shall be taken only under oath or affirmation."
According to Rule 25.01, employment practices, "A. No person in the classified service or seeking admission thereto shall be appointed, reduced or removed, or in any way favored or discriminated against in employment or opportunity for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, physical handicap, medical condition, marital status, age, national origin or citizenship, ancestry, political opinions or affiliations, organizational membership or affiliation, or other non-merit factors, any of which are not substantially related to successful performance of the duties of the position.