EEO Compliance: How to Avoid Discrimination in the Workplace


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Most employers are well aware that they must prevent discrimination in the workplace, yet, within the past 5 years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) received the highest number of charges of discrimination and retaliation in its 50+ year history.
From an employer’s perspective, settlement costs to resolve an EEOC claim fade in the face of additional, often unrecorded, costs to the employer’s organization, such as the potential loss of employee morale or the employer’s reputation. This webinar will show you how to avoid these costs by teaching you:

What qualifies as discrimination under the EEOC
Which laws are enforced by the EEOC
How to stay in compliance with those laws
What an employer’s obligations are, including EEOC posting requirements
And more

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    The legislation is listed top-down and left-right in chronological order.
  • - Website for EEOC Training Institute where employers may register for conferences, programs, seminars, and workshops.

    29 CFR 1601.30 Notices to be posted.

    (a) Every employer, employment agency, labor organization, and joint labor-management committee controlling an apprenticeship or other training program that has an obligation under title VII, the ADA, or GINA shall post and keep posted in conspicuous places upon its premises notices in an accessible format, to be prepared or approved by the Commission, describing the applicable provisions of title VII, the ADA, and GINA. Such notice must be posted in prominent and accessible places where notices to employees, applicants and members are cusomarily maintained.

    (b) Section 711(b) of Title VII makes failure to comply with this section punishable by a fine of not more than $110 for each separate offense.

    [42 FR 55388, Oct. 14, 1977, as amended at 55 FR 2518, Jan. 25, 1990; 56 FR 9625, Mar. 7, 1991; 62 FR 26934, May 16, 1997; 74 FR 63982, 63983, Dec. 7, 2009; 79 FR 15221, Mar. 19, 2014]

    -Employers may print a copy or contact the U.S. Department of Labor to acquire five free copies via phone or online application.
    -Poster is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, and Arabic.
    -Revised in 2009 to reflect developments in the law.
    -Older copies of the poster can be upgraded with a supplement that is posted along side the older version. Supplements are also available on EEOC’s website.

    CALCULATION PROCESS (Can be explained to the audience)
    Once the inflation adjustment factor is determined, the second step
    is to multiply the inflation adjustment factor (45.67%) by the current
    civil penalty amount ($110) to calculate the raw inflation increase
    ($50.24). The third step is to round this raw inflation increase to the
    nearest multiple of a hundred (here $100 because $50.24 is closer to
    $100 than to $0).The fourth step is to add the rounded inflation
    increase ($100) to the current civil penalty amount ($110) to obtain
    the new, inflation-adjusted civil penalty amount ($210). Accordingly,
    we are adjusting the maximum penalty per violation specified in 29 CFR
    1601.30(a) from $110 to $210.
  • - Charge Handling Process

    -All ways at attempting to avoid actual litigation.
  • EEOC’s ADR Policy Statement -

    FREE - Available at no cost to the parties.
    FAIR AND NEUTRAL – both sides say in the process and decide terms, not the mediator. There is no determination of guilt or innocence in the process.
    SAVES TIME AND MONEY - Mediation usually occurs early in the charge process, and many mediations are completed in one meeting. Legal or other representation is optional but not required.
    *CONFIDENTIAL - All parties sign an agreement of confidentiality. Information disclosed during mediation will not be revealed to anyone, including other EEOC investigative or legal staff.
    AVOIDS LITIGATION - Lengthy litigation CAN be avoided. Mediation costs less than a lawsuit and avoids the uncertainty of judicial outcome.
    FOSTERS COOPERATION - Mediation fosters a problem solving approach to complaints and workplace disruptions are reduced. With investigation, even if the charge is dismissed by EEOC, the underlying problems may remain, affecting others in the workforce and human resources staff.
    IMPROVES COMMUNICATIONS - Mediation provides a neutral and confidential setting where both parties can openly discuss their views on the underlying dispute.
    DISCOVER THE REAL ISSUES IN YOUR WORKPLACE - Parties share information, which can lead to a better understanding of issues affecting the workplace.
    DESIGN YOUR OWN SOLUTION - A neutral third party assists the parties in the reaching a voluntary, mutually beneficial resolution. Mediation can resolve all issues important to the parties, not just the underlying legal dispute.
    EVERYONE WINS - An independent survey showed 96% of all respondents and 91% of all charging parties who used mediation would use it again if offered.


    Potential Advantages of Conciliation:
    Voluntary process.
    Discussions are negotiations and counter-offers may be presented.
    Parties are given a final opportunity to resolve the charge informally after completion of investigation, but before EEOC has decided on pursuing litigation.
    Removes the cost, animosity, and uncertainty associated with litigation.
  • EEO Compliance: How to Avoid Discrimination in the Workplace

    1. 1. from HRdirect
    2. 2. Get reliable, trustworthy guidance on which labor law posters you need to post, for whom, and when. is brought to you by HRdirect, the trusted source of practical HR guidance and solutions for smart employers. HRdirect is the largest provider of labor law posters and poster replacement services in the country, serving millions of businesses, large and small, for more than 25 years. Some of our clients - Met Life® - Capital Bank® - Verizon Wireless® - AMC Theatre® - Lucky Brand® - American Eagle® - Aldi - Sovereign Bank® - Penske® Trucking - AAA®
    3. 3. What’s your risk? Mandatory Posting Changes by State since 2010
    4. 4. EEO Compliance: How to Avoid Discrimination in the Workplace Eric B. Meyer
    5. 5. Topics  Intro to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission  Enforced Laws  Bases for Discrimination & Prohibited Policies  Preventative Action  Posting Requirements  Potential Repercussions  Charge of Discrimination  Investigative Process  Circumventing Litigation
    6. 6. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)  EEOC’s Mission: “Stop and Remedy Unlawful Employment Discrimination”  Generally, employers with 15 or more employees are covered by EEOC laws, and employers with 20 or more employees in age discrimination cases  Most employment agencies and labor unions are covered by EEOC laws  These laws apply to hiring, firing, promotions, harassment, training, wages, benefits, and other types of work situations
    7. 7. Enforced Laws  Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)  The Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA)  The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)  The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978  Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)  Sections 102 and 103 of the Civil Rights Act of 1991  Sections 501 and 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973  The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA)
    8. 8. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)  Makes it illegal to discriminate against some on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin or sex  Requires reasonable accommodation of sincerely held religious beliefs, unless doing so imposes an excessive burden on the operation of business  Makes it illegal to retaliate against those who complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation/lawsuit
    9. 9. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA)  Makes it illegal to pay different wages to women and men performing equal work in the same workplace
    10. 10. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)  Makes it illegal to discriminate against people over the age of 40 on the basis of their age
    11. 11. Sections 501 & 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973  Makes it illegal to discriminate against a qualified person with a disability in the federal government  Requires that employers reasonably accommodate the known physical or mental limitation of an otherwise qualified individual, with a disability, unless doing so imposes an undue hardship on business operations
    12. 12. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978  Amended Title VII, making it illegal to discriminate against a woman because of pregnancy, childbirth, or a medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth
    13. 13. Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)  Makes it illegal for the state and local government, and the private sector, to discriminate against disabled people who are otherwise qualified for the position  Requires employers to reasonably accommodate known physical or mental limitations of an otherwise qualified applicant or employee, unless doing so imposes an undue hardship on the operation of the employer’s business
    14. 14. Sections 102 & 103 of the Civil Rights Act of 1991  Amended Title VII, granting discrimination cases the following traits:  Jury Trials  Compensatory Damage Awards  Punitive Damage Awards
    15. 15. The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA)  Makes it illegal to discriminate against employees or applicants on the basis of genetic information  Genetic information includes information regarding genetic tests and a person’s family medical history
    16. 16. Prohibited Policies & Practices  Job Advertisements  Recruitment  Application & Hiring  Background Checks  Job Referrals  Job Assignments & Promotion  Pay and Benefits  Disciple and Discharge  Employment References  Reasonable Accommodation for Disability & Religion  Training & Apprenticeship Programs  Terms & Conditions of Employment  Pre-Employment Inquiries  Dress Code  Constructive Discharge
    17. 17. Bases for Discrimination Race and Color • Physical characteristics; skin color; association with a protected individual National Origin • Accent/language; multilingualism; citizenship; association with a protected individual; national security Religion • Reasonable accommodation; association with a protected individual Sex • Prohibited conduct is sexual in nature; gender-based harassment; pregnancy Age • Intra-class discrimination; years of service where years of service is a proxy for age (such action may also be unlawful if it has a disparate impact based on age) Disability • Does the person in question have mitigating measures (medication, prosthesis, hearing aid etc.); screening unrelated to business necessity; reasonable accommodation
    18. 18. Following Forms of Discrimination Can Arise Under All Bases By a Member of the Same Protected Class Against a Subclass Intersectional Discrimination Stereotype
    19. 19. Preventative Options Offered by EEOC: No-Cost Outreach Programs  No cost to employer  Publication which includes general information about employment discrimination laws and charge/complaint process  Representatives are available for meetings, conferences, seminars, professional associations, community organizations etc. Training Institute  Provided for a fee  In-depth training tailored for employers, which consists of educating managers and employees on laws and discrimination prevention  Training is made available for government and private employers
    20. 20. Mandated Poster  “[L]aw requires an employer to post notices describing the Federal laws prohibiting job discrimination based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, equal pay, disability and genetic information.”  It should be “posted in conspicuous places upon [employer’s] premises.” Moreover, the posting should be “in prominent and accessible places where notices to employees, applicants and members are customarily maintained.”  “Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law” Poster
    21. 21. Repercussions for Noncompliance  On March 19, 2014 EEOC recalculated the Penalty for Violation of Notice Posting Requirements based on the inflation adjustment factor  The adjustment became effective on April 18, 2014  The maximum penalty per violation was raised from $110 to $210
    22. 22. Who May File a Charge of Discrimination  Aggrieved persons:  Individuals who were subjected to alleged discrimination  Persons (both individuals and organizations) who were harmed by alleged discrimination against others  Persons bringing a charge “on behalf of” an aggrieved person or persons  EEOC Commissioners
    23. 23. Investigative Response  If the charge is not dismissed when received by the EEOC, the employer will be:  Notified within 10 days that a charge of discrimination has been filed  Provided with the contact information of assigned investigator  Average duration of an EEOC investigation is 182 days
    24. 24. Available Options at Early Stages of Investigation Employer may select to resolve the charge through mediation or settlement. Employer will be advised if the charge is eligible for mediation. Employer may inquire about the settlement option.
    25. 25. Potential Obligations During Investigative Process Submit a statement of position Respond to Requests for Information Permit an on-site visit Have employees available for witness interviews or provide their contact information
    26. 26. Conclusion of Investigation EEOC determines no reasonable cause to believe discrimination occurred EEOC determines there is reasonable cause to believe discrimination occurred OR
    27. 27. If Investigation Determines No Discrimination Occurred: Charging party is issued with a Dismissal and Notice of Rights. This letter informs the charging party that he or she has the right to file a lawsuit in federal court within 90 days from the date of receipt of the letter Employer is notified and receives a copy of Dismissal and Notice of Rights
    28. 28. If Investigation Concludes Discrimination Occurred: Employer and charging party are issued a Letter of Determination notifying that there is reason to believe discrimination occurred Both parties are invited to join the EEOC in attempting to resolve the charge by way of an informal Conciliation
    29. 29. Exploring Available Options During & After Investigation Mediation Settlement Conciliation
    30. 30. Mediation  Informal process where a third party assists in reaching voluntarily negotiated resolution of a charge of discrimination  Mediator assists in reaching mutually acceptable solutions and does not impose a decision  Attorneys may be present at mediation
    31. 31. Settlement  Charge may be settled at any point of the investigation  Informal process, but enforceable by law  Involves no admission of liability and allows parties to avoid lengthy and unnecessary litigation  EEOC must approve the settlement  Sample settlement agreement
    32. 32. Conciliation  42 U.S.C. 2000e-5 requires EEOC to resolve findings of discrimination through “informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion.”  Charging Party and employer are invited to participate if investigation establishes there is “reasonable cause” to believe discrimination has occurred
    33. 33. Summary  Intro to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission  Enforced Laws  Bases for Discrimination & Prohibited Policies  Preventative Action  Posting Requirements  Potential Repercussions  Charge of Discrimination  Investigative Process  Circumventing Litigation