Seyfarth Synopsis: Blog readers will recall our Vlog in early October recapping the EEOC’s 2017 Fiscal Year. Today, Jerry Maatman of Seyfarth Shaw, LLP discusses recent developments from the EEOC that ought to be “required reading” for employers. Specifically, Jerry analyzes the agency’s new technological initiatives, end-of-year litigation statistics, and the line of high-ranking officials awaiting appointment. Lastly, he gives his predictions for the EEOC’s priorities during FY 2018.
As we detailed in our September 30 blog post, the EEOC filed 184 merit lawsuits in FY 2017, more than doubling last year’s total. According to the Commission’s press release on November 9, 2017, an increase in filings was not the only highlight of this Fiscal Year. The EEOC also recovered $484 million for workers in FY 2017, as well as decreased its number of pending cases to the agency’s lowest backlog in 10 years (see here).
Since the end of the Fiscal Year, the EEOC also rolled out an online portal allowing individuals to take the first steps in filing a charge of workplace discrimination. In the words of Acting Chair Vicki Lipnic, “It’s a giant leap forward for the EEOC in providing online services.” Other important news coming out of the Commission regards newly appointed high-level employees, as well as the upcoming Senate vote on Trump’s two appointees to lead the EEOC.
For those interested in a complete analysis of 2017 EEOC Fiscal Year, stay tuned for the publication of Seyfarth Shaw’s annual EEOC-Initiated Litigation Report coming out at the end of December. In terms of the future, as Jerry states in the video, “put on your seat belts…I think it will be a very interesting next 12 months for the EEOC.”