Almost all companies have policies in place to protect against discrimination of all kinds, however, many fail to implement them properly or responsibly because they don’t fully understand what they mean in practice. Understanding the EEOC law will help your company enact them correctly so you can set an inclusive tone from the top down.
The Basics of the EEOC Law
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is tasked with enforcing laws that protect workers in the United States against discrimination. The core of the EEOC’s mandate is preventing discrimination in the workplace based on race, sex, religion, national origin, color, disability, age, or genetic information.
All kinds of work situations are subject to the law, including hiring, firing, promotions, harassment, training, wages, and benefits.
Company Practices That May be a Violation of an EEOC Law
The best way to avoid legal trouble and stay on the right side of the law is to make sure all company practices are based on merit. The basic idea is that employees should be evaluated based on their work performance and nothing else. The law prohibits discrimination based on personal characteristics in hiring or firing and prevents compensation based on experience level or other protected attributes from setting different salary scales for people of different religions, races, and so on.
There are a few practices that employers should avoid to make sure they are not violating EEOC laws:
Discrimination in hiring and termination
This includes treating employees differently because they are of a different race, age, or any other protected characteristic.
Setting different pay scales based on personal factors
This includes setting a lower salary for employees who have been out of the workforce for a while or employees who have young children at home.
Setting different benefits
This includes setting different health care coverage levels based on an employee’s sex, disability status, or any other personal factor.
This includes punishing an employee for filing a discrimination complaint or reporting illegal hiring or firing practices.
Best Practices Every Company Should Adopt
Set the tone
In any company, culture starts at the top. If upper management sets the tone that discrimination of any kind is tolerated, you can expect it to trickle down. From how managers hire new employees to how they interact with existing ones, the way you treat your employees is one of the strongest indicators of how your company treats people.
Hire a reliable employment screening company
The best way to ensure a company’s hiring practices are following the law is through a reputable employment screening company. Reputable pre-employment background check companies will be able to provide you with an unbiased assessment of your company’s hiring practices and how it treats people.
While the laws around discrimination are designed to protect employees, they can also protect companies. Start taking steps to ensure that your company is following the law. Make sure to find pre-employment background check companies that can implement checks following the laws of your state. This way, you can be sure that your company is creating a safe workplace for all your employees.