Retaliation Most Frequent EEOC Complaint by Public Sector

July 7, 2011 ( - Federal employees and applicants filed 17,583 complaints of employment discrimination during fiscal year 2010, a 3.75% increase over the previous year, according to a new report.

The U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) Annual Report on the Federal Work Force Part I: EEO Complaints Processing for Fiscal Year 2010 finds that as with private sector charges of discrimination, retaliation was the most common allegation of discrimination, and registered a 2.7% increase over the prior fiscal year.  Age and race (African-American) discrimination were the next most frequently alleged bases and each registered 5.1% increases.    

According to a press release, unlike in the private sector, where the EEOC investigates and processes charges of discrimination, federal agencies themselves are responsible for handling complaints of discrimination filed against them.  The average processing time for conducting investigations dropped from 185 days in FY 2009 to 181 days in FY 2010; however, the average processing time for closing complaints increased from 344 days to 360 days.    

Of the 7,053 cases closed on the merits, 3.3% resulted in findings of unlawful discrimination.  Additionally, the parties entered into settlements in 3,623 complaints or 21.2% of the total complaint closures.  

Part II of the report, assessing equal employment opportunity throughout the federal work force, including trends in work force composition, will be published later this year.  

Part I is at