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Just How Big Is Discrimination? Nearly 100,000 Cases Are Filed Every Year in the U.S.

Discrimination in the US

Every year, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission releases the latest data on charges of employment discrimination and resolutions under each of the statutes enforced by the Commission in the U.S. The good news is that the 93,727 charges received in fiscal year 2013 are a 5.7 percent decrease from the 99,412 charges received in fiscal year 2012. But does that mean that discrimination is down?

Discrimination has many categories

Discrimination includes many categories, including race, age, disabilities, sex, religion and color. In the category of race, for example, the number of charges filed in 2015 based on race alone decreased by 1.5 percent from 2009 to 2013, from 33,579 cases in 2009 to 33,068 cases filed in 2013. That's good. Discrimination based on religion, however, has increased over the same period by 9.89 percent. Color-based discrimination has also risen over the same period by 6.89 percent.

Monetary recovery up

The agency refers to monetary recovery as the term that describes the amount of money people who are discriminated against receive as a result of litigation. In it's 2013 report, the agency stated that the agency obtained the highest monetary recovery in its history with a total of $372.1 million paid, reflecting an increase of $6.7 million. Also, the agency has resolved more discrimination charges that those it took in for the last four consecutive years.

The numbers do seem to reflect that progress is being made to not only reduce but discourage discriminatory practices in the workplace.

For more information, visit www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/2-5-14.cfm

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