Charges of race and sex discrimination on the job declined in South Carolina in 2012 – but charges of religious discrimination went up.
That’s according to new figures from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
There were a total of 1,232 South Carolina job discrimination charges filed by the EEOC last year, which accounts for 1.2 percent of the national total.
The leading claim was religious discrimination – 482 cases, or 39 percent of the total. That’s down more than 100 from 2011.
There were 383 claims of sexual discrimination or sexual harassment in South Carolina (31 percent), a drop from 405 in 2011.
But religious discrimination cases rose in 2012: a total of 42 cases (3 percent). That’s up from the 37 files opened in 2011.
The improved workplace bias numbers were not unique to South Carolina. Discrimination claims of all types – race, sex, national origin, and religion – were down nationwide.
The EEOC recovered $356 million for victims of workplace discrimination across the country in 2012.
Following is from the EEOC news release:
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced that it received 99,412 private sector workplace discrimination charges during fiscal year 2012, down slightly from the previous year. The year-end data also show that retaliation (37,836), race (33,512) and sex discrimination (30,356), which includes allegations of sexual harassment and pregnancy were, respectively, the most frequently filed charges. . . .
. . . Also this fiscal year, the agency obtained the largest amount of monetary recovery from private sector and state and local government employers through its administrative process - $365.4 million.
In fiscal year 2010, the EEOC filed 122 lawsuits including 86 individual suits, 26 multiple-victim suits (with fewer than 20 victims) and 10 systemic suits. The EEOC’s legal staff resolved 254 lawsuits for a total monetary recovery of $44.2 million.
. . . .
Overall, the agency secured both monetary and non-monetary benefits for more than 23,446 people.
Sexual harassment is prohibited under the federal Civil Rights Act, which makes it illegal to discriminate on the basis of sex as well as other protected categories like race, national origin and religion. It applies to all businesses with 15 employees or more and to all levels of government and labor organizations.
View the EEOC’s year-end statistical report – which includes a breakdown of discrimination claims by state and by type of claim – here.
Source: EEOC http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/1-28-13.cfm