EEOC trends were recently shared by Malcolm Medley, Director EEOC Miami office, at a Jacksonville meeting. Interesting trends include:
- Retaliation is now the highest number of charges at the EEOC. He believes this is because employees are more knowledgeable of their rights. He notes that employers still haven’t got the message that retaliation is enforceable.
- Race is the second highest charge.
- Religion – prior to 9/11 there were 2400 complaints about religion. Since 9/11 there have been 7,300 complaints.
- Disability – with the expanded definition of disability under the ADAAA there continue to be complaints.
- Employers should also remember that they can’t request, use, or possess predictive medical data. GINA
They are seeing lots of cases since the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was passed. Each paycheck triggers a new cycle of 300 days to legislate. Look at bonuses, benefits, and overtime compensation.
A new mission for the agency in 2012 is to stop and remedy discriminatory practices in the workplace. The emphasis is on systemic discriminatory issues. They will accept an individual complaint and then look at the company.
- Document bad behavior. It raises a question when a 35 year employee suddenly is written up.
- Engage in interactive dialog about any ADAAA accommodation requests.
- How internal investigations are conducted is important before it gets to the EEOC.
- What are the qualifications of the person conducting the investigation – how was it handled?