Resolving Conflict Together!


EEO & Employment Law


When you consider the millions of workers and the diverse workforce that our nation has, it is of no surprise that people bring their own personal biases and prejudices to their respective employer. Fortunately, the victims of workplace harassment and discrimination do have an avenue to assert their rights to equal employment opportunity through a sophisticated investigative complaint process that is administered by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). This federal agency is responsible for employment discrimination issues based on Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This law makes it illegal to discriminate on the basis of race, age, disability, sex, national origin, religion, ethnicity, ancestry, retaliation, genetic information, sexual harassment, and equal pay. The law also makes it illegal to retaliate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit.

Issues the EEOC deals with are wide ranging: from the "terms and conditions" of the employment (such as training, benefits, privileges, assignments, locations of work, etc.) to issues involving termination, constructive discharge, forced resignation, forced retirement, suspension, reprimand, warning, unequal pay, denied hire or promotion, and others. When your case has been filed with the EEOC, you will have a unique opportunity early in the process to mediate the allegation of discrimination. Both the worker (complaintant) and the employer (respondent) must agree to mediate the case. As a former federal mediator for the EEOC, I was given the opportunity to learn a great deal about the investigative and mediation process. I now use those skills in assisting those who have been discriminated and those who are faced with allegations of discrimination. 

In a 2016 survey - employee attitudes and characteristics revealed:

  • 69% of respondents indicated that they would be more willing to take legal action regarding employment discrimination than they were five years ago.
    35% of respondents stated that they had experienced job bias.
  • 79% of respondents believe some, most or all employers engage in some kind of discrimination in hiring or promotion.
  • 51% or respondents stated that all or most employers are guilty of discriminating practices.
  • Corporate responses to workplace conflict.
  • A survey conducted by Price Waterhouse and Cornell's PERC Institute on Conflict Resolution of over 530 corporations in the Fortune 1000 category revealed the following trends:
  • 90% of respondents view Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) as a critical cost-control technique.
  • 54% of respondents indicate that cost pressures directly affected their decision to use ADR.
  • 88% of respondents reported using mediation in the last three years.
  • 23% of respondents use grievance procedures for non-union employment dispute resolution. (A decade ago only a small percentage used them.)

Lipsky, D and Seeber, R "The use of ADR in U.S. Corporations: Executive Summary", 2007 

Another study found that 50% or more of large employers had instituted some kind of grievance process for nonunion employees.

Randy Hoerschgen | 3606 Berkshire Court | Columbia, MO 65203| 573.353.4663