Human Resources News & Insights

EEOC, DOL release enforcement stats

Look out: Two federal agencies have released their latest enforcement data — and boy have they been busy.

Retaliation still reigns supreme

First, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) reported that it received 99,412 private sector workplace bias charges in fiscal year 2012. That’s down (but only slightly) from the 99,947 charges filed in 2011.

The most frequently filed charges were:

  • retaliation (37,836)
  • race (33,512), and
  • sex discrimination, which includes sexual harassment and pregnancy bias (30,356).

Most troubling for employers: The EEOC collected $365.4 million from employers last year — a new record.

That money went toward 23,446 people via mediation, settlements, conciliations or withdrawals with benefits.

FLSA breast milk break regs

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released a summary of enforcement data on the provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that requires firms to provide break time to allow employees to express breast milk.

Between March 23, 2010 and June 11, 2012, the DOL:

  • conducted 54 investigations, and
  • found 36 violations.

The majority of the violations involved “failure to provide a space” to express breast milk. A smaller number of firms allegedly failed to provide a proper amount of break time.

The good news: All 36 employers who were cited have since remedied the issues at their workplace and have said they will comply with the the law moving forward.

As you’ll recall, the provision:

“requires employers to provide ‘reasonable break time for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for 1 year after the child’s birth each time such employee has need to express the milk.’ Employers are also required to provide ‘a place, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public, which may be used by an employee to express breast milk.'”

For more info, check out the DOL’s “Break Time for Nursing Mothers Under the FLSA” fact sheet.

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