Job Bias Charges Hit Record High in 2010

January 11, 2011 ( - The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that private sector workplace discrimination charge filings with the federal agency nationwide hit an unprecedented level of 99,922 during fiscal year (FY) 2010, which ended September 30, 2010.

According to an EEOC press release, all major categories of charge filings in the private sector (which include charges filed against state and local governments) increased. However, for the first time ever, retaliation under all statutes (36,258) surpassed race (35,890) as the most frequently filed charge, while allegations based on religion (3,790), disability (25,165) and age (23,264) increased. Historically, race had been the most frequently filed charge since the EEOC became operational in 1965, the agency noted.  

In its first year of enforcement, the EEOC received 201 charges under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA).   

Despite the increase in overall charges filed with the EEOC last fiscal year, the agency dramatically slowed the growth of the charge inventory, the press release said. As a result, the federal agency ended FY 2010 with 86,338 pending charges – an increase of only 570 charges, or less than 1%. Between fiscal years 2008 and 2009, the EEOC’s pending inventory increased 15.9%.  

The FY 2010 data shows that the EEOC filed 250 lawsuits, resolved 285 lawsuits, and resolved 104,999 private sector charges. Through its combined enforcement, mediation and litigation programs, the EEOC secured more than $404 million in monetary benefits from employers — the highest level of monetary relief ever obtained by the agency through the administrative process — to promote inclusive and discrimination-free workplaces.  

The FY 2010 enforcement and litigation statistics, which include trend data, are available online at