Preventing Workplace Discrimination
According to a recently released report, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) secured more than $482.1 million for victims of discrimination in private, state and local government, and federal workplaces during fiscal year 2016, which ended Sept. 30. While the federal agency's enforcement and litigation report won't be released until early next year, the latest annual Performance and Accountability Report is telling of the types of discriminatory practices that have occurred in private and public sector workplaces.
A breakdown of the $482.1 million secured by the EEOC consists of:
- $347.9 million for victims of employment discrimination in private sector and state and local government workplaces through mediation, conciliation, and settlements
- $52.2 million for workers harmed by discriminatory practices through agency litigation
- $82 million for federal employees and applicants
In addition to the above monetary penalties, EEOC enforcement efforts led to changes to discriminatory practices to remedy violations of equal employment opportunity laws and prevent future discriminatory conduct by employers.
Other key statistics regarding the EEOC's latest fiscal year activities include:
- 97,443 charges resolved by staff, a 6.5 percent increase
- 585,000 calls to its toll-free number
- 160,000 pre-charge inquiries handled in field offices
- 15,800+ charges of discrimination resolved through the agency's administrative processes-settlements, mediations, and conciliations
- 3,700 no-cost educational, training and outreach events
The EEOC filed 86 lawsuits alleging discrimination during fiscal year 2016 and achieved a favorable resolution in approximately 90.6 percent of all district court resolutions. The filings included 55 individual suits and 13 suits involving multiple victims or discriminatory policies, and 18 systemic suits.
EEOC's fiscal year 2016 Performance and Accountability Report is posted on the agency's web site here. Comprehensive enforcement and litigation statistics for fiscal year 2016 will be available on the agency's website in the near future.
Employment discrimination refers to more than just hiring and firing and encompasses nearly every employment decision, from applications and interviews to assignments and transfers, promotions, pay, and benefits. Discriminatory conduct may not be open and obvious, but could be kept quiet or concealed. The employer may even attempt to justify the discrimination by inaccurately depicting job performance as being below standard. This is not acceptable or legal.
If you are in one of the protected classes when the inappropriate conduct takes place, and it is serious enough to have an adverse effect on you, then speaking with legal counsel is the right step to take. Should you have questions about any forms of workplace discrimination, don't hesitate to contact leading California employment lawyers at Kingsley & Kingsley. Call and speak to an experienced California lawyer toll-free at (888) 500-8469 or contact us via email.