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HR Compliance: What Employers Should Know About EEO Retaliation

What Employers Should Know About EEO Retaliation

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a federal agency responsible for enforcing federal equal employment opportunity (EEO) laws. Each EEO law listed below covers certain private-sector employers and prohibits retaliation and related conduct. Retaliation occurs when an employer penalizes an employee or applicant for asserting his or her right to be free from discrimination under the EEO laws, including:

·         Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)

·         The Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA)

·         The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)

·         Titles I and V of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)

·         Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA)

·         The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act of 2022 (PWFA)

Retaliation is the most frequently alleged basis of discrimination in charges filed with the EEOC. Claims of retaliation can result in time-consuming administrative proceedings and expose employers to financial and reputational harm. This Compliance Overview provides a summary of employer obligations under the EEO anti-retaliation laws and best practices to prevent retaliation.

Overview of EEO Laws

EEO laws prohibit employers from retaliating against employees or applicants for asserting their right to be free from discrimination. To help prevent retaliation, employers should familiarize themselves with the various forms of discrimination prohibited under each EEO law and assess whether they are subject to the laws.


This Compliance Overview is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel for legal advice. ©2024 Zywave, Inc. All rights reserved.


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