Recently, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) announced that workplace discrimination charges increased 15% from 2007 to 2008. In Fiscal year 2008, discrimination charges filed with the agency totaled 95,402. According to the EEOC: (1) all major categories of charge filings increased from 2007 to 2008, (2) charges based on age and retaliation saw the largest annual increases and (3) charges based on race, sex, and retaliation continued to be the most frequently filed charges.  

The EEOC indicated that the surge in new charges filings may be based on, among other factors, the economy, increased diversity and demographic shifts in the labor force, and employees having a greater awareness of the law.  

Through its combined meditation and litigation efforts, the EEOC reports that it recovered approximately $376 million in monetary relief for thousands of victims of discrimination and obtained significant remedial relief from employers. Below is a summary of the EEOC’s FY 2008 Charge Statistics.