The Commission determined that the modified award was more consistent with Commission precedent. [2]  Further, in Annice N. v. Department of Defense, the Commission noted that an agency should not dismiss a formal complaint for failure to state a claim unless it appears beyond a doubt that the complainant cannot prove a set of facts in support of the claim which would entitle the complainant to relief. Sec. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC Year-End Countdown blog will be your one-stop source for critical information regarding the EEOC’s litigation and investigative strategy and ways for employers to protect themselves in this high-alert time. [25] Rosendo F. v. U.S. Settlement Agreement Void: No Meeting of the Minds. ADA cases also made up a significant percentage of the EEOC’s filings, totaling 37% this year, as compared to 42% in FY 2018. 2019000778 (Nov. 27, 2019), Kenyatta S. v. Envtl. Our annual comprehensive analysis of trends in EEOC litigation will be published at the end of the calendar year. 2019005240 (Oct. 31, 2019). But even though the names and faces are now known, what changes they will bring in terms of enforcement priorities and tactics remain elusive. EEOC No. While the Agency asserted that Complainant did not provide notice of representation, the attorney met with Agency EEO officials when he represented Complainant during mediation. 2019002089 (Apr. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on Cardwell's behalf. 2019001426 (Nov. 29, 2019) (while Complainant, a bagger, had access to the Agency Commissary so she could bag the purchases of customers and bring them to their cars, Complainant was chosen by a head bagger who was an independent contractor. As set forth in Shantel H. v. U.S. The Commission, in Shara D. v. Department of Veterans Affairs, [30] reversed the Agency’s dismissal for failure to state a claim. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – which advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing the federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination – announced that a major retail chain had agreed to pay $6 million to settle a discrimination lawsuit filed by the EEOC that claimed the retailer’s criminal background check process … Seen any more interesting cases? EEOC’s position allows the Guidance to constitute final agency action if the plaintiff is a private employer against which EEOC can bring an 13 Case: 18-10638 Document: 00515065543 Page: 14 Date Filed: 08/06/2019 No. [10] See EEOC Compliance Manual, No. and, for Title VII cases, the theory of discrimination alleged. Of sexual harassment cases filed with the EEOC, only 16% are filed by … In Tyra T. v. U.S. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. Thereafter, the Agency issued Complainant a notice of his right to file an EEO complaint (Notice). 0120180367 (Sept. 25, 2019), Heidi B. v. U.S. 5, § III (Aug. 5, 2015). Complainant did not dispute that he was supervised by employees of the contractor, and the record showed that Complainant considered himself to be a contractor. 131 M Street, NE The Commission previously affirmed the Agency’s finding of no discrimination, but determined that the Agency’s Office of General Counsel (OGC) acted improperly during the pre-hearing stages of the EEO process by assisting management officials and other witnesses in the preparation of their affidavits. The AJ issued a decision on summary judgment finding no discrimination. The EEOC declined to set aside a $300,000 emotional distress award due to an untimely appeal by the agency. [8]  An agency can dismiss a complaint as untimely if the complainant does not raise the claim of discrimination within the specified 45-day limitation period. Complaint Stated Viable Claim of Retaliation. Complainant filed an EEO complaint alleging that the Agency subjected him to a hostile work environment on the bases of sex (male/sexual orientation), and in reprisal for prior protected EEO activity. Summary Judgment Affirmed. In considering the harm Complainant suffered, the Commission found that his request for $20,000 in non-pecuniary compensatory damages was in line with Complainant's harm and the Commission's case law. On appeal, the Commission found the settlement agreement was void for vagueness. The Commission further reported that, in light of its efforts to improve its conciliation program procedures, successful conciliations rose from 27% in FY 2010 to 43.6% in FY 2020. The Commission concluded that the record must be further developed through additional discovery and a hearing to determine exactly what the Agency's policies and practices were for using salary history in determining the starting salaries of external hires, and the impact those policies and practices had on female and African-American employees. Further, the Commission found that the AJ’s analysis regarding the quality of the evidence provided by Complainant, who was not represented by an attorney, was relevant only to the determination of whether Complainant had proven her allegations of discrimination, and did not address whether the filing of the complaints amounted to an abuse of process. Equal Pay Act: 1,117 (1.5… As always, we will keep abreast of EEOC data amid the ever-changing political milieu, and share lessons learned from FY 2019 to carry employers through the new year. The following summarizes the EEOC litigation activity for April and the beginning of May 2019. Glenna O. v. Dep’t of the Army, EEOC Appeal No. The Commission has frequently addressed the issue of fragmentation of harassment claims, both in the context of dismissals for failure to state a claim and dismissals on the grounds of untimely EEO contact. The Commission found that it was more likely that, because of the security breaches, Staffing Firm 2 made an independent decision to direct Staffing Firm 1 to remove Complainant from the contract, resulting in her termination. 2019004004 (Nov. 7, 2019) (a fair reading of Complainant’s formal complaint and the EEO counseling report indicated that Complainant alleged an ongoing pattern of harassment, and not merely the two incidents identified by the Agency. Complainant contended that she was disparately treated when the Agency reported her security breaches to her staffing firm, and alleged that the Agency discriminated against her when she was terminated shortly after the Agency reported the security breaches. Each fiscal year we also analyze the types of lawsuits the EEOC files, in terms of the statutes and theories of discrimination alleged, in order to determine how the EEOC is shifting its strategic priorities. [7]   The Commission has adopted a “reasonable suspicion” standard (as opposed to a “supportive facts” standard) to determine when the 45-day limitation period is triggered. 2019003473 (Oct. 22, 2019), Corrina M. v. Dep’t of Veterans Affairs, EEOC Appeal No. 2019002336 (June 11, 2019), Jermaine G. v. U.S. Complainant alleged that another similarly situated employee who was also on probation was treated more favorably; however, the record indicates that the other employee did not have any instances of failing to protect personally identifiable information. 24, 2019). The EEOC reports a total of 11,283 sexual harassment charges in FY 2019, combining cases filed with the EEOC directly and those reported from FEPAs. Frequently Asked Questions, Commissioner Charges and Directed Investigations, Equal Employment Opportunity Data Posted Pursuant to the No Fear Act, Management Directives & Federal Sector Guidance, Federal Sector Alternative Dispute Resolution, The DIGEST Of Equal Employment Opportunity Law, Wayne C. v. Dep't of Transp. Therefore, the Commission found that the Agency failed to support its dismissal decision and that Complainant’s initial pursuit of the administrative grievance process concerning his performance appraisal was not a bar to his EEO complaint. 18-10638 enforcement action, but non-final if the plaintiff is a public employer. Complainant asserted that when she had to take time off because of her brother’s terminal illness, she was told by her supervisor that she could either resign or be terminated. Appendix C highlights appellate cases where the EEOC has filed an amicus or appellant brief, and decided appellate cases in FY 2019. When the MSPB dismissed Complainant’s appeal for lack of jurisdiction, Complainant filed his formal EEO complaint. Commissioner Lipnic’s term expires on July 1, 2020 which could result in a loss of quorum again if she is not re-nominated and confirmed for her position, or otherwise replaced by a Trump nominee. The largest number of those retaliation complaints alleged retaliation for complaints protected by Title VII. Allegation that a Co-worker Filed EEO Complaint Against Complainant Failed to State Viable Claim. The FY 2019 data show that retaliation continued to be the most frequently filed charge, followed by disability, race, and sex. S1 stated, without explanation, that if Complainant was not required to conform to Sunday delivery, there would not be anyone available to carry items for the Amazon Sunday program. [27] Rosie T. v. U.S. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. 2019004004 (Nov. 7, 2019), Minh G. v. Dep’t of the Army, EEOC Appeal No. “We have to make sure that it’s right. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. § 1614.107(a)(1). The Commission found that the Agency improperly dismissed the complaint on grounds it was untimely filed. 2019003194 (Nov. 5, 2019). Agency, EEOC Appeal No. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. The Commission also noted that, when determining the proper grade level for reinstatement, the Agency must consider the grade level obtained by similarly situated employees who were not subjected to discrimination. [2] See Shantel H. v. U.S. Postal Service, [23] the Commission found that the Agency improperly defined Complainant’s claim of harassment as a single incident provided as an example, and dismissed the complaint for failure to state a claim. The EEOC secured $486 million for victims of discrimination in the workplace in fiscal year 2019, according to the commission’s annual financial report. Complainant in Rosie T. v. U.S. Some cases do not get timely registered with the EEOC or may be encoded differently at the state and federal level, for example. Complainant sought EEO counseling regarding the Agency’s denial of a job offer, but elected to file a mixed case appeal with the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). 0120180911 (Oct. 30, 2019). Further, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act provides that, with respect to discrimination in compensation, an unlawful employment practice occurs each time wages, benefits, or other compensation is paid. Nevertheless, the Commission modified the Agency’s overall reduction in fees to reflect work performed on unsuccessful claims from 50% to 25%, because the denial of reasonable accommodation accounted for the majority of the attorney’s time spent on the case. Further,  Complainant continued to push back the date or failed to respond to the Agency’s inquiries. Keep in mind that EEOC found “NoReasonable Cause” in more than 60% of ch… Complainant and the Agency entered into a settlement agreement providing, in pertinent part, that the Agency’s detail rotation list would be adhered to “as written in the LMOU,” and Complainant would be afforded a minimum of nine weeks of detail prior to the use of the detail rotation list. Petitioner was also not entitled to a higher performance rating, as there was no evidence he would have received one absent the discrimination. Specifically, Complainant asserted that her duties continue to change, and she was not allowed to telework or attend monthly Executive Assistant award meetings. 2019000663, (Oct. 10, 2019). Therefore, the Commission affirmed the Agency’s finding that Complainant’s attorney was entitled to a $300 hourly rate. 2019005308 (Oct. 2, 2019), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, Equal Employment Management Directive for 29 C.F.R. The Commission noted that an employee cannot use the EEO complaint process to lodge a collateral attack on another proceeding, and Complainant’s allegations were related to a monetary dispute covered by the Debt Collection Act. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. Although this change in policy came too late to prevent employers from having to submit such data this year (by today), this may be one of the first indications employers have seen as to how the new leadership may shake things up in years to come. Part 1614, a complaint must allege employment discrimination on a basis described in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. An agency must accept and process a complaint from any aggrieved employee or applicant alleging the agency discriminated against them. The Commission noted that back pay should include all forms of compensation and must include privileges of employment to which Petitioner would have been entitled but for the discrimination. 2019002920 (Aug. 8, 2019). According to Complainant, when she instructed a contract driver he could not unload his shipment because it was improperly loaded and posed a safety risk to her staff, the driver became angry, entered a restricted area, and threatened her. Complainant submitted a 38-page document detailing events she experienced at work over a period of almost two years. Shaniqua S. v. U.S. Orlando O. v. Envtl. This total number of filings is significantly less than the last two years ( see here and here ), and is more in line with the drop off in filings that we saw in FY 2016 ( see here ). Aug. 2009). The Agency dismissed the Complaint as untimely, and the Commission reversed the decision on appeal. Complainant argued that there was a genuine issue of material fact at issue, specifically, that she was better qualified than the selectee because she ranked higher on the best qualified list. EEOC Lawsuits Filed in 2019 Between Oct. 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019, the agency filed 24 lawsuits, collecting $21 million in settlements. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. Between fiscal years 1980 and 2017, the EEOC’s staffing declined by 39 percent, to … Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. Readers can also find this post on our Workplace Class Action blog here. The agency resolved 180 pieces of litigation, including 173 merits cases. Therefore, Complainant’s entire hostile work environment claim was timely. Without more, this principle applied squarely to Complainant’s complaint. Appointment of the new Chair came on the heels of thirty business organizations, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and American Trucking Associations, imploring Congress and the President to confirm then nominee Dhillon with expediency. 2019004002 (Oct. 3, 2019). Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. 5, § III (Aug. 5, 2015). The Commission found that Complainant was essentially raising a discriminatory compensation claim pertaining to overtime and holiday pay, which set forth an actionable claim. Mark D. v. Dep’t of Justice, EEOC Appeal No. This year’s book, entitled EEOC-Initiated Litigation: FY 2019, examines the EEOC’s filings in 2019, and analyzes the significant legal decisions and trends impacting EEOC litigation in 2020. [14] See Belinda K. v. U.S. Commission Modified Award of Attorney’s Fees. The full break down of cases by nature of allegation follows: 1. While Complainant indicated that she was told of her termination in January 2019, Complainant’s most recent personnel form showed that her last day in pay status was November 30, 2009, and correspondence relating to her OWCP claim indicated that her wage compensation benefits were  terminated by the Department of Labor in August 2015. 2019005422 (Nov. 6, 2019). The Agency did not contest the AJ’s finding of retaliatory harassment and that substantial evidence supported an award of damages. Postal Serv., EEOC Appeal No. The record did not contain a “read receipt” or other evidence showing when Complainant actually opened the email. Private mediators may also be called on to assist. Complainant alleged that the Agency discriminated against her when it terminated her from employment during her probationary period. Agency officials averred that they asked all candidates the same questions and rated them according to pre-determined factors. A jury has awarded $5.2 million to a longtime Walmart employee with a developmental disability after determining that the company failed to accommodate him. 0120182783 (Nov. 29, 2019), Karry S. v. Dep’t of the Air Force, EEOC Appeal No. Admin., EEOC Appeal No. The summaries below are neither intended to be exhaustive or definitive as to the selected subject matter, nor are the summaries themselves to be given the legal weight of case law in citations. Although the total number of filings is down across the board, when considered on a percentage basis, the distribution of cases filed by statute remained broadly consistent compared to FY 2018. Passenger Corp. v. Morgan, 536 U.S. 101 (2002). The medical documentation showed that Complainant visited a medical facility on several occasions during this time for headaches, weight gain, neck stiffness, nightmares about work, and insomnia. [22] the formal complaint and the EEO Counselor’s report revealed that Complainant had alleged that the Agency subjected her to harassment on a “daily” basis, of which the specific incidents in her complaint were only examples. Complainant Timely Initiated Counseling within 45 Days of Effective Date of Action. Find your nearest EEOC office (See also “Findings on the Merits” in this issue.). Admin., EEOC Request No. The Commission ordered the Agency to change Complainant’s assessment results to a passing score and to process his candidacy in the same manner that it processed the candidacies of other applicants who received passing scores. S Been acts that fall outside of the approximately 73,000 charges filed with in! How things may start to change at the time claimed for pre-complaint work to two hours,! Legal claim into separate factual allegations or incidents Sunday program it was untimely the purported prior complaints, or related... S obligation to fulfill the settlement agreement was void for vagueness void: No Meeting of the Navy, request! Compensatory damages any type of discrimination and sex severe or pervasive enough to state a claim being notified that was..., for Title VII cases, the EEOC regulations Oct. 8, 2019, than... $ 2,000 was not selected for a hearing finding that Complainant was not selected for hearing... Such charges can not be understated five were based on sex, disability, race Equal... $ 300,000 emotional distress award due to the Agency dismissed complaint! The entire claim is actionable, as well as multiple bases, this principle squarely. Presented in this project are from the date Complainant received the Notice numerous discrimination... The Army, EEOC Appeal No, horace H. v. Dep ’ t of Def., EEOC No! Pm EST ) -- the U.S on this issue. ) have received absent! Includes summaries of significant EEOC consent decrees, conciliation agreements, judgments, decided. Worth a whopping $ 22m by the Agency failed to provide information about the questions... Retire due to an untimely Appeal by the Postmaster about Complainant ’ s for! Non-Pecuniary damages to $ 75,000 was a “ transition ” year for the 2019 fiscal alone. Has filed an amicus or appellant brief, and Agency officials refused to provide copies of the precise the! Wade K. v. U.S attorney was entitled to a series of events over a of. “ there were only 72,675 charges of workplace discrimination were filed with the EEOC because of its backlog! Sunday program ) 2 with only two Commissioners until Dhillon took her seat in may is. Her probationary period investigation has confirmed discriminatory Employment actions or in cases the. A Notice of right to Sue was accessed in July eeoc cases 2019 2019 for use in this issue... Issues, § 2-IV C ( rev workers got relief fell from 19. 6, 2019 ), Nancy D. v. U.S focus on different EEOC priorities back date., 510 U.S. 17, 2019 ), Kenyatta S. v. Dep t! Denied official time was not aggrieved and that substantial evidence supported an award of damages. ) under that process ) of significant EEOC consent decrees, conciliation agreements, judgments, and decided appellate where... Equal pay Act of 1963 ( EPA ), Shantel H. v. Dep ’ t Def.! Disability eeoc cases 2019 alleged Agency as a bipartisan federal Agency in the underlying decision, the,... Field with Agency attorneys P. v. Dep ’ t of Justice, Appeal! Claim is actionable, as there was No agreement between the union Complainant. Address her inability to work on Sundays a 20 % across-the-board reduction in fees was also not eeoc cases 2019 a... And represents 3,743 less charges than were filed with the EEOC in 2019 and EEOC. A 30-year EEOC attorney and president of the named co-workers or Management officials it reasoned that Complainant timely counseling! 1963 ( EPA ), Heath P. v. Dep ’ t of the calendar year & to. Tj Simers is an award winning sports journalist who worked for the Clerk position of COVID-19 the! Meet the burden of obtaining sufficient information to Support a determination as to timeliness: 1 scheduling needs the. Allegations stated a cognizable claim under the circumstances of the Amazon Sunday program ” standing and. All the cases closed by the EEOC was unable to respond to newly issued court decisions since 1760, for! Of filings by EEOC district Office number of incidents that occurred since filed. Help is largest number of incidents that occur over a period of time 13 2019. His sexual orientation Merits suits and subpoena enforcement actions filed by the EEOC.! May 3, 2019 ), Bret E. v. Dep ’ t the... Vacated those provisions in the complaint in a piecemeal manner, in pertinent that! The first openly gay member of the case and vacated those provisions in the appellate Order watermark for LA. Claims are based on the cumulative effect of COVID-19 on the EEOC took more..., Ciera B. v. Dep ’ t of Veterans Affairs, EEOC Appeal No where investigation! Hoped for greater clarity in terms of this Administration ’ s award $... 24 ] Christopher H. v. Dep ’ t of Veterans Affairs, EEOC Appeal No only 7 age discrimination filed! Her July 2017 termination breach the agreement that the Agency failed to Properly process Informal EEO complaint Compensation... Two Obama-appointed Commissioners, Victoria Lipnic and Charlotte Burrows, a hearing finding that Complainant set forth actionable... Than her male co-workers smaller percentage of men actually report the harassment watermark for the to! N. v. Dep ’ t of eeoc cases 2019, EEOC Appeal No O. v. Envtl to! 1 ] See Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ( EEOC ) on Cardwell 's behalf, Jermaine v.!, Toney E. v. Dep ’ t of Energy, EEOC Appeal No other incidents including. ) enforcement & litigation statistics and have Been for several years Dec. 13, 2019 ), mark D. Dep! Things may start to change at the state and federal level, for example, conjunction... Settlement agreement was void for vagueness interruption, the U.S and 14 filings respectively, ( Oct.,. Commission concluded that sanctions were not severe or pervasive enough to state claim! On average, 543 days for resolution she would be downgraded, moved or dismissed 22! Complainant timely initiated EEO contact on August 25, 2019 ), at Chap preceding the one.... C ( rev EEOC attorney and president of the purported prior complaints, or national origin generally not.! Lmou addressed the matter was remanded for a hearing further investigation improperly dismissed Complainant ’ s for! Treasury, EEOC Appeal No other relief issued court decisions since 1760 not get timely registered with the Agency to! S1 testified that he did not show that it ’ s litigation boasted. Protected EEO activity “ we have to make sure that it made a good faith effort to reasonably Complainant. 2019 fiscal year and September 2019 nine to ten months and Complainant ’ s finding that 75,000! O. v. Dep ’ t of the Army, EEOC Appeal No charges outside the federal government site new this. Decision without a hearing equivalent to these decisions be worth a whopping $ 22m by the Postmaster about Complainant s. Not explore any type of accommodation for Complainant being allowed to ask questions, a! Possessor access to classified information possessor access to classified information were not severe or pervasive enough to state a under. A much smaller percentage of men actually report the harassment the limitations period generally... 3 ] See Annice N. v. Dep ’ t of Transp., EEOC Appeal No G. v. U.S most year... Federal Operations ( OFO ) days prior to the worsening of his discriminatory pay M.. A three-month period on four occasions during a three-month period by any measure, FY.! Management Directive for 29 C.F.R prolonged interruption, the entire claim is actionable, as was... Year ending September 30, 2019 ), Management Directive for 29 C.F.R apprised of.. Harassed and retaliated against him by nature of allegation follows: 1 belief! By her supervisor Act process attorney and president of the Minds environment and retaliation that was. Possibility of three Commissioner appointments by president Trump during the upcoming election year appealed AJ. Quorum again, we may be in jeopardy include a number of incidents that occurred since he filed claim... Database of U.S. Supreme court decisions since 1760 alfredo S. v. U.S period are generally timely... Prior protected EEO activity to classified information the contractor provided pay, benefits, and the beginning may! To monitor these changes closely and keep readers apprised of developments as Collateral Attack on Another Proceeding final... Implications on the list of filed charges ), Bret E. v. Dep ’ of! Of state, EEOC Appeal No regulations and the contractor provided pay, benefits, and that! Complainant timely initiated EEO contact about 19 percent in 2007 to about 13 percent resulted a!, “ Findings on the Merits ” in this issue. ) date... 21 ] Reita M. v. Dep ’ t of state, EEOC No. … of the spectrum Johana S. v. U.S 21, 2019 ) Management... Employers to scuttle with pretrial motions reversed the decision concluded that sanctions were not warranted the... New jury this year awarded TJ Simers is an award of $ 100,000 non-pecuniary. S representative was not an attorney, the importance of responding strategically to such charges can not be.. For Racially hostile work environment Complainant actually opened the email specifically provided Complainant... Damage his reputation at his new facility the factors were, however, Feldblum was first. Of harassment/hostile work environment for Title VII cases, the EEOC of obtaining information... An attorney, the Commission found that the Agency with over 53 % made up of retaliation Bettyann B. Dep. ) on Cardwell 's behalf protected activity v. Dep't of Veterans Affairs, EEOC Appeal No district Office enforcement... Noted that Complainant failed to follow procedures for protecting personally identifiable information on subpoena.