Last year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) settled more than 99,109 workplace discrimination claims—securing more than $398 million from employers in the private and public sectors. Discrimination lawsuits can be time-consuming and expensive for employers and result in a loss of employee morale or reputation within the community.
Top 10 Causes of Discrimination Claims:
Per the EEOC, below are the top 10 reasons for workplace discrimination claims in the fiscal year of 2017:
- 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 Nondiscrimination Act—206 (0.2 percent)
The percentages add up to more than 100 percent because several lawsuits were filed alleging multiple reasons for discrimination.
What Should Employers Do?
Employers should take the following six steps to protect themselves from discrimination claims:
- Audit their practices to uncover any problematic situations
- Create a clear anti-retaliation policy that includes specific examples of what management can and cannot do when disciplining or terminating employees
- Provide training to management and employees on anti-retaliation and other discrimination policies
- Implement a user-friendly internal complaint procedure for employees
- Uphold a standard of workplace civility, which can reduce retaliatory behaviors
For more information on discrimination claims and for tips on how to protect your business, contact Sapoznik Insurance today.
This is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice.