What Types of Discrimination Charges Are Most Often Filed?
According to fiscal year (FY) 2014 enforcement statistics released by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), private-sector workplace discrimination charge filings (88,778) were down nearly 5.3 percent from the 93,727 charges received in fiscal year 2013. 5
The number of charges filed decreased in part due to the government shutdown during the reporting period.
Among the charges the EEOC received, the percentage of charges alleging retaliation reached its highest amount ever: 42.8 percent. The percentage of charges alleging race discrimination, the second most common allegation, has remained steady at approximately 35 percent.
The EEOC reported the following breakdown of its caseload (number of charges, followed by percent of all charges):
- Retaliation: 37,955 charges; 42.8%
- Race: 31,073 charges; 35.0%
- Sex: 26,027 charges; 29.3%
- Disability: 25,369 charges; 28.6%
- Age: 20,588 charges; 23.2%
- National origin: 9,579 charges; 10.8%
- Religion: 3,549 charges; 4.0%
- Color: 2,756 charges; 3.1%
- Equal pay: 938 charges; 1.1%
- Genetic information: 333 charges; 0.4%
Because individuals often file charges claiming multiple types of discrimination, the number of total charges for any given fiscal year will be less than the total of the 10 types of discrimination listed.
In fiscal year 2014, 30 percent of the charges filed with EEOC alleged the issue of harassment on various bases, such as race harassment or harassment on the basis of disability. Preventing harassment through systemic enforcement and targeted outreach is a priority issue for the EEOC.
Discharge continues to be the most common issue for all bases under Title VII, the ADEA and the ADA. Allegations of harassment for all bases were the next most frequently cited issue, with the exception of race. For the basis of race, discriminatory terms and conditions of employment was the second most frequently cited issue (9,332), with harassment being the third (9,023).
The greatest number of charges were filed in Texas (8,035), followed by Florida (7,528) and California (6,363).
In fiscal year 2014, the EEOC obtained $296.1 million in total monetary relief through its enforcement program prior to the filing of litigation.
The number of lawsuits on the merits filed by the EEOC’s Office of General Counsel throughout the nation was 133, up slightly from the previous two fiscal years. A lawsuit on the merits involves an allegation of discrimination, compared with procedural lawsuits, which are filed mostly to enforce subpoenas or for preliminary relief. Monetary relief from cases litigated, including settlements, totaled $22.5 million.
A comprehensive breakdown of the EEOC’s enforcement statistics can be found on the EEOC’s web site at http://eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/enforcement/index.cfm
5EEOC Releases Fiscal Year 2014 Enforcement and Litigation Data, released February 4, 2015, http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/2-5-14.cfm ; Enforcement and Litigation Statistics, http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/enforcement/index.cfm.
Reposted with permission from Wolters Kluwer.
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