June 20, 2017

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Trump-Appointed EEOC Acting Chair Victoria Lipnic Says Continuity in Near Term

For the first time since her appointment by President Trump as acting chair of the EEOC, Victoria Lipnic last week provided a glimpse into the commission’s future. Her central message is not to expect to see any major changes in the near future. Acting Chair Lipnic occupies only one of a total of five commission seats at the EEOC. However, there are only four sitting commissioners, as one of the seats is currently vacant. Potential major policy shifts likely will have to wait for other Trump appointees to join the Commission.

However, Lipnic did note that the Trump administration has highlighted job growth as a priority, and that goal is something the EEOC should be cognizant of while it remains committed to its core mission of enforcing the workplace discrimination laws. This includes a continued commitment to the pursuit of high-profile, systemic discrimination issues, with the cautionary note that the EEOC needs to be “strategic” about pursuing these matters given its limited resources.

As for the controversial regulations surrounding the annual EEO-1 reports, requiring large employers (100 or more employees) to provide much more detailed information, Lipnic said that while that regulation falls “squarely under” President Trump’s directive to all agencies to rethink the regulations they have on the books, she was the only current commissioner to vote against the regulation.

It appears that major change at the EEOC – if any – will have to wait until further down the road.

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About this Author

Anthony Glenn, Barnes Thornburg Law Firm, Labor and Employment Attorney
Associate

Anthony K. Glenn is an associate in Barnes & Thornburg’s Indianapolis office and is a member of the Labor and Employment Law Department.

Mr. Glenn has experience counseling clients on a number of issues concerning both traditional labor and employment law, such as termination decisions, medical leave management, disability accommodation, workplace discrimination, and wage and hour issues, as well as union avoidance and management of a collective bargaining relationship. He also has experience with the litigation process in federal and state...

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