Contributed by Jon Hoag
A recent EEOC press release announced that the EEOC collected a record $365.4 million dollars from private employers last year. The EEOC highlighted this record-breaking level of monetary relief recovered as evidence that it was successful in its objective of strategic law enforcement. The EEOC stressed that approximately 10% of the monetary relief came from systemic charges of discrimination, which was four times the amount received in the previous fiscal year.
As part of the EEOC’s new strategic plan, it will release the amounts it recovers on an annual basis. We should expect that the EEOC will strive to exceed the record $365.4 million it collected this fiscal year. To do so, the EEOC will continue to seek out systemic claims and look for opportunities to bring a class-based claim, including requests for company policy information during investigations. Based on recent guidance and decisions issued by the EEOC, the focus on systemic discrimination is likely to be in the area of background checks in hiring and employer leave/attendance policies as related to the making of reasonable accommodations under the amended ADA.
It seems that one the EEOC’s main objectives may be to obtain monetary relief for alleged victims of discrimination. This is unfortunate news for employers.