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Press Release 08-12-1998


* * * Enforcement Statistics to be Posted on Web Site * * *

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today that the agency's pending inventory of discrimination charges has been sliced nearly in half, down from approximately 111,000 charges in fiscal year (FY) 1995 to 57,871 at the close of the third quarter (June 30) of FY 1998. The latest enforcement statistics also show the number of charges resolved by EEOC continues to exceed the number of charges filed with the agency on an annual basis, despite reduced staff levels.

Revamped EEOC charge handling procedures, implemented in June 1995, are credited with the dramatic curtailment in charges awaiting resolution and the enhanced efficiency of agency charge processing in general. Based on the recommendations of a special task force lead by then Vice Chair Paul M. Igasaki, the Commission adopted Priority Charge Handling Procedures in 1995 and a National Enforcement Plan in 1996. Since then, EEOC district offices have implemented Local Enforcement Plans and offered mediation-based alternative dispute resolution (ADR) to charging parties and employers as an alternative to the traditional investigative process.

Mr. Igasaki, who is currently serving as Chairman, said he was pleased that the agency's reforms "continue to have a positive impact on the core of our service -- the investigation and resolution of discrimination charges. We have tried to develop a more flexible system that accepts our obligation to be as effective as we can be. While our progress on inventory reduction has been substantial, much remains to be done." He added, "The national and local plans the Commission has developed to carry out our operational goals and enforcement mission have enabled us to use our limited resources more strategically."

The Commission is also announcing that comprehensive agency private sector administrative enforcement statistics are now posted on EEOC's home page on the World Wide Web at (click on Enforcement Statistics). The data include the number of charges filed with EEOC annually, the statute under which the charges were filed, the basis of alleged discrimination, and the monetary benefits paid to victims of discrimination. Although the information on the web site will not include the latest third quarter FY 1998 information, the statistics are complete through FY 1997. The data will be updated at the end of each fiscal year. Data on EEOC litigation enforcement is not included.

The statistics, which run from FY 1991 through FY 1997 (October 1, 1990 through September 30, 1997), reflect charge processing information under the following EEOC-enforced statutes: Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in the private sector and state and local governments; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act; and the Equal Pay Act.

The data show that the number of private sector charges filed with EEOC has averaged more than 85,000 per year since FY 1993, the first full year of the Commission's enforcement of Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Charges filed under the ADA have accounted for over 20 percent of the agency's caseload every year since FY 1994.

Significantly, however, since FY 1995 the number of discrimination charges resolved each year has exceeded the number of charges filed. In addition, monetary benefits obtained for charging parties have risen sharply. In fact, agency records were set in FY 1997, as investigators resolved an unprecedented 106,312 charges and secured $176.7 million in monetary benefits for charging parties.

The statistics further show that the number of sexual harassment charges filed nationwide with EEOC (and state and local agencies) has more than doubled, from 6,883 in FY 1991 to 15,889 in FY 1997.

The following charts provide a sampling of enforcement data that can be found on the agency's web site:

Enforcement Data FY 1991 FY 1995 FY 1997
Total Charges Filed 63,898 87,529 80,680
Resolutions 64,342 91,774 106,312
Pending Inventory 45,717 98,269 64,100
Monetary Benefits $93.5 million $136 million $176.7 million
Types of Charges Filed FY 1991 FY 1995 FY 1997
Race 27,981 29,986 29,199
Sex (Gender) 17,672 26,181 24,728
National Origin 6,692 7,035 6,712
Religion 1,192 1,581 1,709
Retaliation 7,906 15,342 18,113
Age 17,550 17,416 15,785
Disability not applicable 19,798 18,108
Equal Pay Act 1,187 1,275 1,134

NOTES: The number of Total Charges reflects the number of individual charge filings. Because individuals often file a charge citing multiple bases (race, sex, etc.), the number of Total Charges for any given fiscal year will be less than the total number of all bases of discrimination alleged in charges. EEOC began enforcing the Americans with Disabilities Act on July 26, 1992.