The EEOC recently released FY 2011 statistics. According to the EEOC press release, 99,947 charges were filed during fiscal year 2011, which ended on September 30, 2011. This is the most charges filed in the 46 year history of the EEOC. The EEOC also recovered $365 million on behalf of those who filed charges, also a record number. FY 2011 ended with 78,136 pending charges, a decrease of 8,202 charges from FY 2010. The EEOC filed 261 lawsuits in FY 2011, including 23 alleging systemic allegations affecting large numbers of employees, 61 alleged multiple victims, and 177 individual lawsuits. The EEOC's private sector mediation program recovered more than $170 million in monetary benefits for complainants, also an historic high. The number of mediations that were resolved totaled 9,831, another record. In the federal sector, the EEOC resolved 7,672 requests for hearings, recovering more than $58 million for the complainants. For a comprehensive 86 page report, you can view the FY 2011 Performance and Accountability Report issued by the EEOC.
Practice pointer. I believe that the bad economy is driving the increase in numbers of charges filed with the EEOC. Employers need to be aware that if the economy does not significantly improve in 2012, the number of charges may go even higher. As you have often seen me write, train, train, train and document, document, document.