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EEOC Informal Discussion Letter

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

EEOC Office of Legal Counsel staff members wrote the following informal discussion letter in response to an inquiry from a member of the public. This letter is intended to provide an informal discussion of the noted issue and does not constitute an official opinion of the Commission.

Employment Advertisements

December 29, 2005


Thank you for your e-mail dated December 12, 2005, asking whether the phrase "Equal Employment Opportunity" must be included in printed job advertisements. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission National Contact Center (EEOC NCC) has forwarded your letter to us for a response.

The EEOC enforces federal laws which prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, and disability. Those laws do not require the phrase "Equal Employment Opportunity" to be included in printed job advertisements. They simply require that jobs be advertised on a nondiscriminatory basis. Including language such as "Equal Employment Opportunity" or "Equal Opportunity Employer" may be an appropriate way to encourage additional applications from members of protected groups, such as racial or ethnic minorities, who are not applying for the job to the extent that you would expect in light of their representation in the qualified labor force.

We hope the above information is helpful to you. Please note, however, that this letter does not constitute an opinion or interpretation of the Commission within the meaning of §713(b) of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §2000e-12(b), or under Section 10 of the Portal-to-Portal Act of 1947, 29 U.S.C. § 259.


James E. Cooks
Senior Attorney Advisor

This page was last modified on April 27, 2007.