Tag Archives: Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

So, What Exactly is the Interactive Process?

Interactive
Most employers are well aware that the Americans with Disabilities Act (and similar state laws) require employers to engage in the “interactive process” when an employee requests a disability accommodation. But in actual day-to-day practice, human resources professionals and others tasked with fulfilling this obligation often find themselves stumped. “Interactive process” is a vague term, … Continue reading this entry

EEOC Proposes Extending Pay Data Submission Deadline to September 30

EEOC
As we recently reported, federal Judge Tanya Chutkan of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia recently ordered the EEOC to move forward with stalled Obama-era requirements that employers who are required to file annual EEO-1 reports provide certain pay data with those reports. At the time of our last article, it was … Continue reading this entry

EEO-1 Report – Will Employers Need to Include Compensation Data or Not?

EEO
Short Answer: Currently, no. But first, some background. Generally, employers with 100 or more employees, and certain federal contractors and subcontractors, are required to file an Employer Information Report EEO-1 each year. The EEO-1 is a report of the employer’s work force by job category, sex, race, and ethnicity. In 2016, then-President Obama announced a … Continue reading this entry

Employers’ Diversity Data and Initiatives: Trade Secret or Open Book?

diversity
As many companies prepare to submit their annual “EEO-1” reports to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission revealing their workforce statistics by race and gender for their U.S.-based employees by EEO job category, they face the increasing possibility that this information will become public. The decision last week by a federal district court vacating the administrative … Continue reading this entry

Two Department of Labor Agencies Announce Recent Developments: EEOC and OFCCP

OFCCP
OFCCP Audit Scheduling Letters Available Online – On Friday, February 22, 2019, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) announced that it is on schedule to post its next set of Corporate Scheduling Announcement Lists (CSALs) in the department’s FOIA Library next month (around mid- to late-March). As a reminder to our readers who … Continue reading this entry

What Is the EEOC up to in the Trump Administration?

EEOC
Despite having only three active members on its five-member Commission and having no General Counsel, the EEOC has remained quite busy in its strategic enforcement of federal workplace discrimination laws. You may remember that since the 2016 election, the EEOC has been operating with an acting Republican Chair and two Democratic Commissioners, with the remaining … Continue reading this entry

Is Being Overweight an Impairment?

EEOC
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 40 percent of U.S. adults are obese. The CDC uses the Body Mass Index (BMI) as the benchmark for obesity. BMI is a calculation based on height, weight and age. A BMI of 30 or more, applying the CDC standards, constitutes obesity. The question … Continue reading this entry

Parental Leave Benefits are Under Scrutiny – Be Sure Yours Don’t Discriminate!

Benefits
As the pool of talented employees tightens, more and more employers are offering perks and benefits to lure the best and the brightest into their ranks. Offering generous benefits for working parents is one of the particularly hot trends at the moment, with paid time off chief among them. Companies offer a range of paid … Continue reading this entry

What Now for Wellness?

Wellness
If you’re an employer trying to sponsor a wellness program for 2019, then the recent kerfuffle between the AARP and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) affects you. The AARP has challenged the EEOC’s wellness program regulations on the grounds that the EEOC’s permissible wellness incentive of up to 30 percent of the cost of … Continue reading this entry

You Signed A Consent Decree. So Now What?

Consent
Any employer who has been on the receiving end of a lawsuit filed by the EEOC or a similar state agency is aware that a standard requirement of settling this type of case is entering into a “consent decree.” A consent decree is a public record (which the agency will publicize on its website) that … Continue reading this entry

EEOC Scores Victory in Sexual Orientation Discrimination Lawsuit

EEOC
In recent years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has increasingly focused its enforcement initiatives on prohibiting sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace. Now, the agency has a concrete victory to show for its efforts. A federal district court in Pittsburgh recently awarded more than $55,000, representing the statutory maximum in compensatory and punitive damages, … Continue reading this entry

Employers Must Use Caution When Basing Pay Decisions On Prior Salary History

Employer
Imagine a scenario where an employer hires two individuals – a male and female – to fill two identical jobs (i.e., same job qualifications and same job duties). Both individuals satisfy the educational, skill, and other technical requirements for the job and they have similar employment histories.  However, at their prior places of employment, one … Continue reading this entry

Federal Court Shoots Down EEOC Subpoena

EEOC Developments
Employers facing Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge investigations may find themselves on the receiving end of overly broad, unduly burdensome and/or irrelevant information requests from the EEOC. If an employer refuses to comply with the requests, the EEOC has the authority to issue a subpoena.  However, the agency’s subpoena power is not without limitations. … Continue reading this entry

EEOC Issues New Harassment Guidance

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently issued proposed guidance crystallizing the agency’s expectation that employers be proactive in eliminating workplace harassment.  The Proposed Enforcement Guidance on Unlawful Harassment, which was published on January 10th, requires that employers implement programs to combat “known or obvious risks of harassment,” and states that a failure to do … Continue reading this entry

Stepping Out of the Shadows: Accommodating Mental Health Issues in the Workplace

EEO Compliance
2016 brought about a host of changes for employers, including new political leaders, ever-changing technology, and new and more open dialogue on a variety of different issues. Aside from politics, perhaps one of the biggest issues brought to the forefront this past year concerns the topic of mental health. Once taboo, discussions of mental health … Continue reading this entry

EEOC Suffers Another Setback – ADA Does Not Require Automatic Reassignment of Disabled Employee to Open Position

EEOC Developments
As we have previously reported, under the Obama administration, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has aggressively sought to expand the breadth of the agency’s authority to collect employee pay data and other private company information. Similarly, the EEOC has sought to expand the scope of federal civil rights laws in a number of areas, … Continue reading this entry

EEOC’s Revised Proposal to Collect Pay Data Keeps Focus on Pay Discrimination Agenda

As we reported previously, enforcement of equal pay laws and remedying of pay disparities continue to be top priorities for the U.S.Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and U.S. Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP). The EEOC again highlighted this ongoing focus this past week when it announced revisions to its February 2016 proposal to … Continue reading this entry

EEOC's Select Task Force Study of Harassment Provides Robust Training Guidance

Last month the EEOC’s Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace issued a long-awaited report. That report is a four-part, 88-page document — meaning digesting the report is a hefty task. Fortunately, the Task Force also issued an Executive Summary that provides an excellent overview and makes wading through the findings … Continue reading this entry

New EEOC Rules for Wellness Programs: A 30 Percent Incentive = Voluntary

For years, employers have been allowed to offer voluntary wellness programs to employees under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Both laws generally prohibit health-related questions and medical examinations, such as biometric screenings, but have an exception if done in conjunction with a voluntary wellness program. However, in … Continue reading this entry

EEOC Serves Notice Regarding Transgender Employees Bathroom Access Rights

EEOC Developments
In the midst of all the media coverage surrounding transgender bathroom policies, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has recently put employers on notice of its position that denying an employee access to a restroom corresponding to the employee’s gender identity is sex discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights act of … Continue reading this entry

Government Outlines Key Labor and Employment Initiatives

Representatives of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), as well as the Department of Labor and the Department of Justice (DOJ), participated in an American Bar Association Equal Opportunity Law conference in Austin, Texas, this month. During that conference, EEOC representatives, including three of the commissioners and general counsel David Lopez, addressed a number of … Continue reading this entry

Obesity Not A Disability Without An Underlying Medical Cause

In June of last year, we pondered whether obesity is a mere physical characteristic or a disability protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as now amended by the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA). In that inquiry, undertaken in the context of a pending appeal of a federal court’s dismissal of a … Continue reading this entry

Hostile Work Environments and Sexual Orientation: EEOC Files First Federal Suits

EEOC Developments
Normally in this space we write about court decisions that have already occurred and are likely to impact employers. This week, we focus on cases that have just been filed and could have far reaching implications. In a March 1, 2016 press release, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced in two separate lawsuits that … Continue reading this entry

Time To Stop And Actually Look At Your Bulletin Boards

Employer
When was the last time you stopped and looked – really, truly looked – at all of the workplace posters on your company’s bulletin boards? Many employers take the Ron Popeil philosophy of workplace posters and “set it, and forget it.” But failing to keep your workplace posters up to date can lead to unnecessary … Continue reading this entry