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Workers win record number of bias cases in 2011, EEOC reports

November 17, 2011 |  9:36 am

More workers than ever sought help against office discrimination from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission this year, the agency said this week.

More than 99,947 charges were filed in 2011 alleging unfair workplace practices based on race, sex, age, religion, disability and even family medical history, according to the EEOC’s annual performance report

That’s the highest number since the commission was launched through the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The agency also won a record amount of monetary relief –- nearly $365 million -– for employees.

Over a year in which national unemployment remained stuck at around 9%, many workers are working longer hours for less pay, with older employees expecting to delay retirement.

The EEOC resolved 112,499 cases through a mix of investigations, conciliations, mediations and litigation, more than last year.

The agency won $3 million for 290 former 3M employees who had accused the company of denying leadership training to and laying off hundreds of workers over age 45. About 800 Verizon employees won a $20-million fund after challenging the company over claims that it disciplined or fired employees with disabilities.


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-- Tiffany Hsu

Photo: Paul Taggart / Bloomberg