On March 13, 2023, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) released its Annual Report for fiscal year (“FY”) 2022, demonstrating a significant increase in the number of charges of discrimination filed with the agency, as well as emails and calls to the agency’s contact center, from the year prior.
A total of 73,485 new discrimination charges were filed in FY 2022, up from 61,331 in FY 2021. The largest category of harassment charges filed with the EEOC in FY 2022 involved claims of sex-based harassment. Charges alleging discrimination on the basis of COVID constituted 10,000 of the new charges, up from 3,631 in FY 2021. Additionally, the agency saw a significant increase in calls and emails from employees making inquiries or seeking the agency’s assistance.
In response to these increases, the EEOC filled 352 new positions, the majority of which are investigators, mediators, attorneys, and administrative staff. We predict that the number of charges filed with the EEOC in FY 2023 will surpass the 2022 numbers and the agency will use its increased manpower to file more lawsuits, with claims of unequal pay on the basis of sex constituting a significant focus this year.
Contact Tommy McGoey, Courtney Turkington, and Kindall James for assistance reviewing and revamping your internal policies and procedures and guidance on taking disciplinary action against workers. In the event a charge of discrimination is filed, our team is experienced with conducting internal investigations and responding to EEOC charges of discrimination, as well as handling mediations and defending any resulting lawsuits.
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