Friday, February 25, 2011

Unemployed Treated Disparately???

The Employment Opportunity Commission seems to have a lot of time on its hands.  The EEOC has decided to look into if companies may be excluding job applicants simply because they don’t have jobs.  EEOC Commissioners stated at a hearing this week that they are investing whether excluding unemployed applicants from applying for a job could have a greater effect minorities.

The EEOC noted that the overall unemployment rate is 9% equating to nearly 14 million people out of work. As compared to the general population, the unemployment rate is higher among percent among Blacks and Hispanics, 15.7% and 11.9% respectively.

So a friend asked what I thought about this.  Was the EEOC serious?  While it’s seems that the EEOC DOES have too much time on their hands, notwithstanding that, it is true that the racial discrimination cases can be supported by the use of statistics.  I wonder what the true motivation of the employers who employed these hiring methods. 

A counter to the EEOC’s position is that if the employer has a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason for its decision, it may avoid liability.  If the employers can create a rational business basis for not permitting ANY unemployed persons from applying for jobs, I suspect that the courts may not find a basis for allowing the suits to proceed to trial.  I guess we’ll see if how much money our government will spend on analyzing statistics rather than trying to figure out how to create incentives so business owners will create new jobs!

1 comment:

  1. I wonder if companies will continue to include statements like “Must be CURRENTLY employed” in the job requirements section of job postings. If the unemployed population is disproportionately made up of protected individuals then I could see people saying that they were being discriminated against. It will be interesting to see how many of these case get brought to the forefront especially with such a large number of unemployed looking to get back to work.