The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced 84,254 workplace discrimination charges were filed with the federal agency nationwide during fiscal year (FY) 2017. The fiscal year ended September 30, 2017. EEOC states they secured $398 million for victims in the private sector and state and local government workplaces through voluntary resolutions and litigation. Comprehensive enforcement and litigation statistics are posted on the agency’s website.
The data shows that retaliation was the most frequently filed charge filed with the agency, followed by race and disability. The agency also received 6,696 sexual harassment charges and obtained $46.3 million in monetary benefits for victims of sexual harassment. Specifically, the charge numbers show the following breakdowns by bases alleged, in descending order:
- Retaliation: 41,097 (48.8 percent of all charges filed)
- Race: 28,528 (33.9 percent)
- Disability: 26,838 (31.9 percent)
- Sex: 25,605 (30.4 percent)
- Age: 18,376 (21.8 percent)
- National Origin: 8,299 (9.8 percent)
- Religion: 3,436 (4.1 percent)
- Color: 3,240 (3.8 percent)
- Equal Pay Act: 996 (1.2 percent)
- Genetic Information: 206 (.2 percent)
These percentages add up to more than 100 because some charges allege multiple bases.
EEOC legal staff filed 184 merits lawsuits alleging discrimination in fiscal year 2017. The lawsuits filed by the EEOC included 124 individual suits and 30 suits involving multiple victims or discriminatory policies and 30 systemic discrimination cases. At the end of the fiscal year, the EEOC had 242 cases on its active docket. The EEOC achieved a successful outcome in 90.8 percent of all suit resolutions.
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