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Ask the HR Pro: New EEOC poster

by Ashley Cuttino, Ogletree Deakins, co-chair COVID-19 Litigation Practice Group and Kesha Wilson, Ogletree Deakins, counsel attorney

Ask the HR Pro

Q: Is there a new EEOC poster that I need to post in my business?

A: Yes. On Oct. 19, 2022, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released a new poster entitled “Know Your Rights: Workplace Discrimination is Illegal.” All covered employers, generally those with at least 15 employees, are required to display the updated EEOC poster, alongside other required EEOC posters in their workplaces.

The EEOC has not announced a deadline to comply with switching out the old poster for the updated poster; however, now is the time to ensure your company is up to date on all required postings. Failure to comply with the posting requirement could result in a monetary fine of $100 for each separate offense. In January 2022, the Department of Labor increased the maximum fines for noncompliance with certain notice and posting requirements, highlighting the need for employers to understand these rules.

EEOC laws apply to all types of work situations including hiring, firing, promotions, harassment, training, wages and benefits. The standard requirement is for employers to physically post the notice in a conspicuous location in their workplaces. Most employers have traditionally chosen to display EEOC posters in their corporate break rooms or cafeterias to meet these requirements.

The EEOC also provides digital formats of their required posters and encourages covered employers to post them in a conspicuous location on their company website or intranet. Digital poster files also can be emailed directly to remote employees. This allows employers to still meet posting requirements, despite having remote or distributed workforces.

The EEOC provided links to PDF versions of the poster for employers to print in English and Spanish. Additional languages will be made available at a later date. Digital PDF and HTML versions of the poster, optimized for electronic posting, also are provided.

The Oct. 19 EEOC poster replaces the previous version entitled “Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law.” The new “Know Your Rights” poster utilizes plain language and highlights key information from the various workplace discrimination laws in bullet points, making it easier for both employers and employees to understand their rights and obligations.

The new poster covers discrimination topics related to:

  • Race, color, sex (including pregnancy and related conditions, sexual orientation or gender identity), national origin, religion.
  • Age (40 and older).
  • Equal pay.
  • Disability.

Genetic information (including family medical history or genetic tests or services).The poster also covers retaliation for filing an EEOC charge, reasonably opposing discrimination, or participating in a discrimination lawsuit, investigation, or proceeding.

Substantive updates specify:

  • Pay secrecy requirements for federal contractors under Executive Order 11246.
  • That harassment is a prohibited form of discrimination.
  • Sex discrimination includes discrimination based on pregnancy and related conditions, sexual orientation or gender identity.

The updated poster prominently displays internet links and email addresses informing employees of how to contact the EEOC if they have experienced discrimination. A QR code also provides
employees immediate access to an EEOC instructions webpage that walks them through the steps to file a new workplace discrimination charge.

Visit eeoc.gov/poster to download the poster.

This column is provided by Ogletree Deakins, Atlanta, as part of a partnership with the American Rental Association (ARA) for ARA’s Human Resources Assistance Program. ARA members can receive a single sign on from the ARA webpage to a microsite specific to ARA on the Ogletree Deakins platform; get access to two 30-minute calls with an HR professional per year; access to an FAQ section as well as to Ogletree Deakins’ library of webinars; and access to Ogletree Deakins’ ARA-specific webinars. To learn more online, visit ARArental.org/ManageBusiness/HR.