The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received 82,792 private-sector discrimination charge filings in fiscal 2007, the highest volume since 2002 and the largest annual increase (9%) since the early 1990s, the agency says.
Discrimination allegations based on race, retaliation and sex were the most frequently files charges. More specifically, 30,510 allegations based on race were filed, up 12% over the previous year; 26,663 allegations based on retaliation were filed, an increase of 18% and a record high; and 24,826 allegations based on race/gender were filed, up 7%. Allegations based on age reached 19,103, an increase of 15% over the previous year and the largest annual increase since fiscal year 2002.
Pregnancy charges also reached a new high at 5,587, topping by 14% the previous year's record high of 4,901. Sexual harassment filings numbered 12,510.
Corporate America needs to do a better job of proactively preventing discrimination and addressing complaints promptly and effectively, said Commission Chair Naomi E. Earp upon release of the data.
The EEOC says it recovered about $345 million in monetary relief for charging parties. Thats a 26% increase over the prior year.