On March 13, 2017, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that five of its offices have launched a new system to make the charge-filing process easier. The new Online Inquiry and Appointment System will allow individuals seeking to file a discrimination charge to take their initial actions—submitting inquiries and scheduling intake interviews—electronically.

The five offices that are using the new online system are Charlotte, Chicago, New Orleans, Phoenix, and Seattle. The portal is available for individuals who live or work within 100 miles of the EEOC offices in these five cities. A nationwide rollout of the online system may follow after the agency evaluates the public’s experiences in the five cities where it was launched.

The EEOC provides more details on the online system—including instructions on how to use the inquiry system to file a complaint and how to use the appointment system to schedule an interview—on its website.

The new inquiry and appointment system was rolled out as part of the EEOC’s ACT Digital initiative, an online system affecting new charges—which the agency first announced in May of 2015. According to the EEOC, ACT Digital was launched “to improve service to the public, streamline the administrative process, and reduce the use of paper submissions and files.”

EEOC Acting Chair Victoria A. Lipnic commented that the “new system will make the EEOC much more accessible to the public—it’s a big step forward in the agency's move to online services.”