On December 17, 2012, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) approved its Strategic Enforcement Plan for Fiscal Years 2013-2016 (“SEP”). The SEP establishes priorities and integrates all components of the EEOC’s enforcement. In so doing, the SEP adopted the following national priorities:
1- Eliminating Barriers in Recruitment and Hiring. The EEOC intends to target class-based recruitment and hiring practices that discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity or national origin, religion, age, gender (women), and disability.
2- Protecting Immigrant, Migrant and Other Vulnerable Workers. Among other things, the EEOC intends to target disparate pay, job segregation, harassment, trafficking and discriminatory policies affecting those workers who may not be aware of their rights to equal employment opportunity, or are otherwise reluctant to exercise them.
3- Addressing Emerging and Developing Issues.
4- Enforcing Equal Pay Laws. The EEOC will continue to target compensation disparities and practices in the area of gender or sex discrimination.
5- Preserving Access to the Legal System. The EEOC will scrutinize policies and practices that have the effect of discouraging employees from seeking relief under the applicable employment discrimination statutes.
6- Preventing Harassment Through Systemic Enforcement and Targeted Outreach.
The EEOC noted in its SEP that over the last decade, the number of charges filed against private and public employers increased by more than 22%.
For more detailed information concerning the SEP, click here: U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Strategic Enforcement Plan FY 2013-2016.