EEOC and FTC Announce Responses to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

News

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – a federal agency enforcing workplace anti-discrimination laws – and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) – a federal agency working to protect and educate consumers – have announced responses to the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The EEOC is implementing agency-wide telework In response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic where all employees, other than the minimal staffing needed to handle mail, will be encouraged to telework until further notice, according to a press release from the EEOC.

On March 12, 2020, all EEOC offices began conducting charge intake over the phone to minimize the health risks to agency employees and the public while ensuring that no employee or applicant would lose their rights under the laws we enforce. To file a charge, call 1-800-669-4000.

Consumers who want to file a charge of discrimination can visit the EEOC Public Portal to schedule an intake appointment by telephone. The system can also be accessed through the EEOC website at www.eeoc.gov. More information about reaching EEOC field offices is at www.eeoc.gov/field/.

The EEOC has also told employers that the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 do not prevent them from following guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about steps they should take regarding the Coronavirus.

The FTC has responded to the Coronavirus crisis by focusing on the health and safety of their people, their families, and the entities and individuals who appear before them, and the continuity of their mission, according to a statement from FTC Executive Director David B. Robbins.

First, most FTC employees are working remotely, with limited exceptions for emergency personnel and staff who must be in the office to perform mission-essential work.  By minimizing the number of people coming into our facilities, the FTC can better protect those who do need to be here.

Second, the FTC has suspended non-critical domestic and international travel, and prohibited travel to those countries identified as high risk by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of State. For other destinations, staff may undertake official travel only in compelling circumstances. 

Third, the FTC is suspending unplanned visitor access to its facilities. Almost all internal and external meetings will be handled by telephone or videoconference, and parties should assume that meetings will be held remotely, rather than in-person, until further notice.  To learn more, visit www.ftc.gov.

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global background check provider headquartered in California – is following the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on employers and posting blogs on the ESR News Blog about the subject that are tagged “Coronavirus.” To learn more about ESR, visit www.esrcheck.com.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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