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Filing a discrimination charge with the EEOC

When employees suspect that a supervisor is discriminating against them based on age, gender, race, religion or some other protected classification, they have the right to address the issue. If you find yourself in a situation such as this, you should first determine your employer's policies and procedures and follow the guidelines for reporting the behavior. 

If your employer does not take steps to correct the issue, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, you have the right to file a formal complaint with that federal agency. If you are unsure about representing yourself through the process, you may have someone else take on this role for you.

Your formal discrimination complaint must include specific information:

  • Your contact information
  • Your account of the discriminatory treatment and behaviors you suffered, and the reason you believe they occurred 
  • The negative outcomes for you, such as emotional trauma, physical trauma, damage to your career or other injury

You must sign the document or have your representative sign it. 

The EEOC investigates complaints such as yours, usually completing them within 180 days of receipt. If someone at your workplace is still harassing you, or if the harassment gets worse, you may add these incidents to your complaint for investigation. This may draw out the process, but it may be worth it to ensure that the agency examines every issue. You have the right to appeal through the EEOC if the investigation does not result in the correction of the issue.

If your employer refuses to correct the situation, does not offer you a settlement or offers you a low settlement that does not cover your damages, you have the right to file a lawsuit. Having every instance of inappropriate behavior documented may be essential to your case.

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