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Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

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Definition:

Equal employment opportunity (EEO) laws make it illegal for employers to discriminate against an employee or potential employee in certain workplaces.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which was created by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, is the federal agency that has the responsibility to "promote equal opportunity in employment through administrative and judicial enforcement of the federal civil rights laws and through education and technical assistance." The EEOC handles complaints about workplace discrimination.

While state laws may differ, the federal laws prohibit discrimination in employment for:
  • Age
  • Disability
  • National Origin
  • Pregnancy
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Sex or Gender
  • Sexual Harassment

The EEOC has also made decisions about such areas, for example, as:

  • Equal Pay and
  • Retaliation for Making a Sexual Harassment Claim.

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