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PRESS RELEASE
9-14-04

EEOC AND EDUCATION AMERICA/REMINGTON COLLEGE ENTER INTO NATIONAL MEDIATION AGREEMENT

57th National Universal Agreement to Mediate Between Commission and Major Employer

MIAMI - The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Education America/Remington College today announced the signing of a National Universal Agreement to Mediate (NUAM) to informally resolve workplace disputes through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) prior to an EEOC investigation or potential litigation.

Today's agreement marks the 57TH NUAM that EEOC has signed with a large, broad-based employer and continues the trend of major companies signing on to the Commission's widely acclaimed mediation program. Remington College, based in Little Rock, Arkansas, is a proprietary (vocational or career oriented) group of colleges and employs approximately 1,600 employees in 13 states. Further information about the company, founded in 1985, is available on its web site at www.remingtoncollege.edu.

Costales added: "EEOC mediation is fair, non-adversarial, expeditious, cost-effective and often resolves employment conflicts to the satisfaction of all involved parties. We applaud Remington College for working with us in partnership to reach this important agreement." Robert Acre, Vice President Human Resources for Education America/Remington College, said: "Our company has participated in the EEOC's ADR program and we are very pleased with the successful outcomes."

Under the terms of the NUAM, all eligible charges of discrimination filed with the Commission naming Education America/Remington College, as the employer/respondent will be referred to the EEOC's mediation unit, as appropriate. The company will designate a corporate representative to handle all inquiries and other logistical matters related to potential charges in order to facilitate a prompt scheduling of the matter for EEOC mediation.

The expansion and promotion of ADR and voluntary mediation is the centerpiece of Chair Dominguez's Five-Point Plan to improve EEOC's overall operations. EEOC's mediation program is one of the largest employment-related ADR programs of its kind nationwide, with over 11,500 mediations conducted annually. In addition to the 57 NUAMs, EEOC district offices have entered into more than 600 mediation agreements with employers at the local and regional levels within their respective jurisdictions.

Since 1999 when the program was implemented nationally, EEOC has mediated more than 50,000 cases with approximately 70% being successfully resolved in an average time of 85 days - nearly half the time it takes to resolve a charge through the investigative process. Additionally, EEOC's experience over the years has shown that 13-20% of mediated cases are resolved based solely on a non-monetary benefit. A comprehensive survey conducted by independent researchers showed that 91% of charging parties and 96% of employers would use EEOC's mediation program again if a charge was filed - irrespective of issues, bases, size of employer, or whether the charge was resolved or not. The study concluded that the parties saw the EEOC's process as fair, neutral, and efficient.

The EEOC enforces Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which prohibits discrimination against individuals 40 years of age or older; sections of the Civil Rights Act of 1991; the Equal Pay Act; Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in the private sector and state and local governments; and the Rehabilitation Act's prohibitions against disability discrimination in the federal government. Further information about the Commission is available online at www.eeoc.gov.