Be alert: A seemingly small bureaucratic change at the EEOC could lead to an increasing number of employment-related lawsuits filed by the agency, plus more-targeted enforcement.
What’s new? For years, the EEOC has used its staff attorneys in each region to litigate that region’s cases. But as part of its new Systematic Discrimination Initiative, the agency will begin staffing employment discrimination cases based on a national law firm model. Cases will be assigned to subject-matter experts (wherever they are in the country), rather than EEOC attorneys who happen to work in the office where the issue arose.
“This is a radical change,” says Elizabeth Owens Bille, counsel to the EEOC’s vice chairman.