In 2017, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) resolved more than 99,109 workplace discrimination claims—securing more than $398 million from employers in the private and public sectors as a result of these claims.

Discrimination lawsuits can be very time-consuming and expensive for employers, and can result in a loss of employee morale or reputation within the community. Employers must take action to proactively prevent claims.

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Top 10 Causes of Discrimination Claims in 2017

  1. Retaliation—41,097 (48.8 percent of all charges filed)
  2. Race—28,528 (33.9 %)
  3. Disability—26,838 (31.9 %)
  4. Sex—25,605 (30.4 %)
  5. Age—18,376 (21.8 %)
  6. National origin—8,299 (9.8 %)
  7. Religion—3,436 (4.1 %)
  8. Color—3,240 (3.8 %)
  9. Equal Pay Act—996 (1.2 %)
  10. Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act—206 (0.2 %)*

*These percentages add up to more than 100 percent because some lawsuits were filed alleging multiple reasons for discrimination.

Grab the Anti-Retaliation Best Practices Ebook

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"The employer is automatically liable for harassment by a supervisor that results in a negative employment action such as termination, failure to promote or hire, and loss of wages."  ~EEOC


7 Actionable Steps for Employers 

Knowing the breadth of claims that can result in costly judgments is the first step in a proactive approach to prevention. Employers must take action to foster a workplace environment that discourages discrimination by establishing clear guidelines and implementing appropriate training for employees and managers. Upholding a standard of workplace civility can reduce retaliatory behaviors.

These 7 steps will help protect employers from retaliation and other discrimination claims:

    1. Audit practices to uncover any problematic situations
    2. Publish the company's equal opportunity statement in the employee handbook
    3. Post required display materials where they may be viewed by all employees
    4. Create a clear written anti-retaliation policy that includes specific examples of what management can and cannot do when disciplining or terminating an employee
    5. Provide mandatory training to management and employees on anti-retaliation and other discrimination policies
    6. Implement a user-friendly internal complaint procedure for employees 
    7. Create standard operating procedures for investigating and resolving workplace discrimination

 Free Download: Best Practices to Prevent WP Harassment

For more information on discrimination claims and for tips on how to protect your business, contact WD & Associates today.

Schedule a Call With Our Team

Related Content: 

                  Best Practices to Consider About Retaliation 

                  Quiz: Is It Sexual Harassment 


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