EEOC Reports More Discrimination Charges in 2010
Statistics released by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission this month reveal that employees are filing more charges of discrimination of all kinds. Employees filed a total of 99,922 charges of discrimination in fiscal year 2010 (which ended September 30, 2010) up from 93,277 in the prior fiscal year.
According to the press release, in fiscal year 2010, “the EEOC secured more than $404 million in monetary benefits from employers – the highest level of monetary relief ever obtained by the Commission through the administrative process… .”
Of particular interest to employers, retaliation charges have surpassed charges for race-based discrimination to become the most common type of charge filed.
“It’s crucial for employers to remember that claims for retaliation can survive, even if the original, underlying complaint is closed,” cautions MSEC attorney Curtis Graves. “Employers should publish their policies against retaliation in their handbooks and take affirmative steps to prevent it whenever a charge of discrimination is filed.”
Statistics cited in the press release indicate that there were more charges of discrimination filed last year under every law enforced by the EEOC. The EEOC began enforcement of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act last year, and received 201 allegations of discrimination under that Act.