WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Education and Labor Committee Republican Leader Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Civil Rights and Human Services Subcommittee Republican Leader Russ Fulcher (R-ID) sent a letter to U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) Chair Charlotte Burrows requesting information about her questionable and rushed decision to end the Commission’s successful mediation and conciliation pilot programs.
In the letter, the Members write: "We are concerned that your first actions as EEOC Chair were to discontinue these successful pilot programs with little explanation or justification. We urge you to reconsider your hasty decisions to terminate these programs and are requesting additional information about your actions. Mediation and conciliation are vitally important functions of EEOC that lead to just and timely resolutions of cases for workers and employers before cases go through costly litigation." The Members continue: "The mediation pilot program, or 'ACT (Access, Categories, Time) Mediation pilot,' was intended to enhance EEOC’s already successful mediation program … and EEOC received positive feedback on the pilot. The conciliation pilot was intended to build on a renewed commitment to communication between EEOC and the parties, increase internal accountability, and improve existing practices by adding a requirement that the appropriate level of agency management approve offers before they are communicated to employers."
BACKGROUND: On January 27, 2021, EEOC Chair Charlotte Burrows terminated the agency’s mediation and conciliation pilot programs. These pilot programs were launched in July 2020 and recently renewed before Chair Burrows terminated them. The pilots were intended to enhance and strengthen the agency’s existing mediation and conciliation programs. These programs allow the agency to resolve discrimination charges and provide timely relief to workers while avoiding costly litigation.
To read the full letter to Chair Burrows, click here.