The top workplace discrimination cases in 2015 according to the EEOC:
- Retaliation – 39,757 (44.5%)
- Race – 31,027 (34.7%)
- Disability – 26,968 (30.2%)
- Sex – 26,396 (29.5%)
- Age – 20,144 (22.5%)
- National origin – 9,438 (10.6%)
- Religion – 3,502 (3.9%)
- Color – 2,833 (3.2%)
- Equal Pay Act – 973 (1.1%)
- Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) – 257 (.3%)
(Note: Because of lawsuits filed for multiple reasons, the totals are greater than 100%)
In 2015, the EEOC resolved more than 90,000 workplace discrimination cases, securing more than $525 million from employers in the private and public sectors as a result of these cases.
Retaliation lawsuits are brought after an employee alleges an employer has fired, demoted, harassed or otherwise retaliated against them for filing a charge of workplace discrimination or assisting with an investigation or lawsuit. Retaliation claims are the most frequently filed workplace discrimination charge – growing almost 5% in 2015.
In January 2016 the EEOC released proposed revisions that would make it easier for employees to pursue retaliation charges by expanding its view of that constitutes “actionable retaliation”. Details can be found here.
What can you do to protect your business?
- Create a clear anti-retaliation policy that includes specific examples of what management can and cannot do when disciplining or terminating employees.
- Provide training to management and employees on anti-retaliation and other discrimination policies.
- Implement a user-friendly internal complaint procedure for employees.
- Uphold a standard for workplace civility, which can reduce retaliatory behaviors.
For more information on this topic and other important HR issues, please contact Tiffany Passmore, Director of Client Services at The Flanders Group. We offer tools, samples, and advice to help you protect your business. Call 800-462-6435 ext. 234 or email [email protected].