Number of Discrimination Charges Declined in '05

February 10, 2006 ( - The number of discrimination charges filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) declined by 5% in 2005.

In its news release, the agency said EEOC officials cited aggressive outreach and training efforts as a possible factor in the decrease.Charges filed at EEOC field offices throughout the country totaled 75,428 for fiscal year 2005, which ended September 30. This continues a three-year decline.

Last year the agency held a record 5,516 outreach, education, and technical assistance events nationwide, reaching more than 350,000 people, according to the release. These events covered laws enforced by the agency, as well as its major initiatives: Freedom to Compete, Youth@Work, and the President’s New Freedom Initiative.

The FY 2005 data also showed increases in merit resolutions, monetary benefits and lawsuits, as follows:

  • Resolved 77,352 private sector discrimination charges, 21.5% of which were closed with a favorable outcome for the charging party (merit resolution). The average charge processing time was 171 days.
  • Resolved 7,908 cases through the agency’s National Mediation Program, with an average resolution time of 81 days, and increased the number of “Universal Agreements to Mediate” with employers at the national, regional, and local levels.
  • Obtained nearly $380 million in monetary relief for charging parties through enforcement and litigation combined, including a record $271.6 million at the pre-litigation stage (including $115 million through mediation).
  • Filed 383 merits lawsuits (direct suits, interventions, and conciliation agreement enforcement actions), resolved 337 merits suits, and obtained $107.7 million in litigation monetary benefits. Of the total litigation activity, 139 suits were filed and 116 suits resolved that involved multiple aggrieved parties or victims of discriminatory actions.

Concerning the type of charges, the year-end statistics show that charges based on race, sex and retaliation were the most frequent filings. The breakdown of filings by type is:

  • Race – 26,740 charges (35.5% of all filings)
  • Sex – 23,094 charges (30.6% of all filings)
  • Retaliation – 22,278 charges (29.5% of all filings)
  • Age -16,585 charges (22% of all filings)
  • Disability – 14,893 (19.7% of all filings)
  • National Origin – 8,035 (10.7% of all filings)
  • Religion – 2,340 (3.1% of all filings)
  • Equal Pay – 970 charges (1.3% of all filings)

In addition, there were 12,679 sexual harassment charge filings and 4,449 pregnancy discrimination filings in fiscal year 2005 with EEOC offices and state and local Fair Employment Practices Agencies (combined). Of the total number of sexual harassment charges, 14% were filed by men.

The EEOC Web site is .