The U.S. economy’s slow rebound has done little to dampen employees’ enthusiasm for filing EEOC discrimination complaints.
U.S. employees filed 99,412 charges of job discrimination with the EEOC in fiscal year 2012, which ended Sept. 30. That’s just 535 fewer than were filed in 2011, when the commission handled the most bias complaints in its 47-year history.
During the first decade of this century, employees (on average) filed about 79,000 complaints annually of race, sex, age, disability, religion or national-origin discrimination.
In FY2010, that number spiked to 99,922, fed by the poor economy and EEOC outreach efforts to encourage workers to file claims.
The EEOC set a record in FY2012 for monetary recovery through its enforcement efforts, collecting $365.4 million from private-sector employers. It recovered another $44.2 million through its litigation program, which brought 122 lawsuits to trial.
The commission typically releases detailed breakdowns of particular kinds of discrimination charges in January.
- How to Fire an Employee the Legal Way: 6 Termination Guidelines
- When employee sues, beware whistle-blower add-on that alleges violation of public policy
- Bullet-proof your promotion process: Tell everyone to forward notes and documents to HR
- Remind supervisors: You don't tolerate name-calling, especially when it's race-based
- Keep all medical records confidential! Otherwise, normal lawsuit rules don't apply