EEOC's 29th National Mediation Agreement and First with a 'Big Three' Automaker
DEARBORN, Mich. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and "Big Three" global automaker Ford Motor Company today signed 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 when a charge of discrimination is filed with the agency.
The EEOC's 29th national mediation partnership with a large employer (mainly Fortune 500 companies) bolsters a multi-year trend of Corporate America signing on to the Commission's widely acclaimed mediation program one of the largest employment-related ADR programs of its kind nationwide, with more than 11,500 mediations conducted annually.
"The Commission hails the willingness of Ford Motor Company to work with us in partnership," said Commission Chair Cari M. Dominguez during today's signing ceremony at Ford World Headquarters in Dearborn, Mich. "Mediation benefits both parties by addressing employment disputes in a fair, timely, cost-effective, and non-adversarial manner."
Joe Laymon, Ford Motor Company's Vice President for Corporate Human Resources, said: "This is an opportunity to establish closer ties with the EEOC and provide an avenue to rapidly and appropriately address employee concerns."
Today's agreement marks the first time the EEOC has signed an NUAM with a major U.S. automaker. In addition to EEOC's 29 national mediation agreements with large employers, agency district offices have entered into approximately 500 local mediation agreements with companies at the state or regional levels within their respective jurisdictions. Expanding mediation is a key component of Chair Dominguez's Five-Point Plan to improve the EEOC's overall operations.
Under the terms of today's NUAM, all eligible charges of discrimination filed with the Commission naming Ford Motor Company 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.
Further information about the EEOC and its national mediation program is available on the agency's web site at www.eeoc.gov. Additional information about Ford Motor Company can be found on its web site at www.ford.com.
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.