The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has released detailed statistics for the more than 76,000 charges of workplace discrimination the agency received in fiscal year 2018, which ended on September 30, 2018.
The EEOC reported in a press release that it resolved 90,558 charges of discrimination and secured $505 million for discrimination victims working for private companies and federal, state, and local governments during the past fiscal year. According to EEOC data from the 2018 fiscal year, retaliation in the office was the most frequently filed charge, representing more than 51% of the cases received. Discrimination cases based on sex, disability, and race also were high on the list of filed cases.
While the total number of charges filed in 2018 were less than 2017, and were the third fewest filed since 1997, there was a 13.6% increase in the number of sexual harassment charges filed in 2018. The number of sexual harassment charges reached a new high for the past seven years, reflecting a greater focus on gender discrimination and equal pay. On Equal Pay Day this year, EEOC stated that for the 2018 FY, the agency collected nearly $15 million from cases involving equal pay violations: $10.5 million for resolving administrative equal pay cases and $4.1 million in litigation for discrimination victims whose claims included equal pay violations.
The EEOC filed 217 total lawsuits against employers in FY 2018, the highest number in the last 7 years, according to the Labor and Employment Law Blog.
States in which more than 4,000 cases were filed are:
Texas, 7,482 cases filed
Florida, 6,617 cases filed
Georgia, 4,919 cases filed
Pennsylvania, 4,463 cases filed
Illinois, 4,444 cases filed
California, 4,344 cases filed
The agency stated that it also reduced the charge workload by nearly 20%, thanks to the deployment of new strategies to prioritize the cases by merit, ease of investigation, and with the use of improved digital systems.
Organizations should be prepared for continued, focused enforcement on pay discrimination issues in fiscal year 2019.