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Managing Equal Opportunity and DiversityI don’t think a day goes by without news of a new equal opportunity related lawsuit Federal law protects individuals in many different ways:Age Disability Genetic InformationNational OriginPregnancyRace/ColorReligionSexSexual HarassmentSexual OrientationMarital StatusEqual Pay and CompensationEEOC 2015 Statistics•Discrimination charges were up slightly from 2014 to 2015 from 88,778 to 89,385•In terms of the volume of charges by protected class, the highest percentages were:–Retaliation – 44.5% –Race – 34.7% –ADA/Disability – 30.2% –Sex/Gender – 29.5% •The categories that increased in number of filings were:–Retaliation–Disability–Age–national origin–religion•Disability charges cited most frequently were–back impairments–orthopedic impairments–depression–anxiety disorder–diabetes •The EEOC received 257 charges related to the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) –2011 was its first official full year of enforcement –prohibits discrimination on the basis of genetic information, including family medical historyObviously a matter of great concern to all employers
So it’s no wonder that a Business Week survey indicates that more than 40% of employers now carry employment practices liability insuranceUnderstanding equal opportunity law is essential for all managers todayBrief BackgroundLegislation barring discrimination is nothing newThe 5thamendment to the U.. Constitution states that “no person shall… be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of the law.”Big problem; we can change laws and then decide whether or not to enforce themBut, changing people’s hearts is a lot harderNo dramatic change until the early 1960’s.Equal Employment Opportunity LawsTitle VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act (as amended in 1972)It shall be unlawful employment practice for an employer;To fail or refuse to hire or to discharge an individual or otherwise to discriminate against and individual with respect to his or her compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment,because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.To limit, segregate, or classify his or her employees or applicants for employment in any way that would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his or her status as an employee, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission(EEOC) was instituted by Title VII. The members are appointed by the President with the consent of the Senate for 5 year terms.