by Art Gutman Ph.D., Professor, Florida Institute of Technology

In a press release on 1/11/11, the EEOC reported a record number of discrimination claims in the private sector for FY 2010, which ended on September 30, 2010. The actual number was 99,923, which was roughly a 7% increase over FY 2009. A summary of these charges for the last seven years across major classifications can be found here. Included among the classifications, are first-time claims under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA). Inspection of the table reveals that for the most part, there were no dramatic changes in the percentage of claims per classification. Most of the percentage changes were less than 1%, with the lone exceptions being for age claims (down 1.1%) and ADA claims (up 2.2%). An important point to note is that the percentages do not add up to 100% for the various statutes because many of the individual claims contain multiple charges.

There were several additional points highlighted by the EEOC, most notably:

  • The mediation program ended the year with a record 9,370 resolutions, 10 percent more than FY 2009 levels, and more than $142 million in monetary benefits;

  • The EEOC also expanded its reach to underserved communities by providing educational training, and public outreach events to approximately 250,000 persons;

  • The agency continued its concerted effort to build a strong national systemic enforcement program. At the end of the fiscal year, 465 systemic investigations, involving more than 2,000 charges, were being undertaken;

  • The EEOC resolved a total of 7,213 requests for hearings in the federal sector, securing more than $63 million in relief for parties who requested hearings. The agency also resolved more than 4,600 federal sector appeals -- 400 more than in FY 2009.

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