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EEOC to Study Workplace Harassment

Select Task Force of Academics, Practitioners and Stakeholders To Study How To Address And Prevent All Types of Workplace Harassment

WASHINGTON--Jenny R. Yang, Chair of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), today announced the membership of the EEOC Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace.

At a public meeting on the topic of Workplace Harassment held January, 2015, Yang announced the formation of the Select Task Force, which will examine the problem of workplace harassment in all of its forms and look for ways by which it might be prevented and addressed. The Select Task Force will be co-chaired by EEOC Commissioners Chai R. Feldblum and Victoria A. Lipnic.

"A lot of progress has been made around the issue of workplace harassment, but we know it remains a persistent problem. Complaints of harassment span all industries, include many of our most vulnerable workers, and are included in 30% of the charges that we receive." said Yang. "Through creation of this Select Task Force, I hope we will reach more workers and more in the employer community so we can understand the challenges they face and promote the practices we've seen work. I really look forward to the results."

The Select Task Force is comprised of 16 members from around the country, including representatives of academia and social science; legal practitioners on both the plaintiff and defense side; employers and employee advocacy groups; organized labor; and others. Its work will begin formally in the weeks to come. It is anticipated that the Select Task Force will hold a series of meetings, including public meetings, over the course of the next year.

"Harassment occurs every day in workplaces across America and that is an unacceptable reality. The question is, what can we do about it? I am pleased to be co-chairing the Select Task Force for the Study of Harassment in the Workplace with my colleague, Commissioner Lipnic. The Task Force will provide a unique opportunity to share ideas and come up with new and creative strategies to address this problem," said Feldblum.

Lipnic said, "From the time I first joined the EEOC, I was surprised and alarmed by the consistent number of harassment charges we receive and the disturbing facts we see in many of the cases we handle. I wish a task force on workplace harassment wasn't necessary in 2015. But, I hope and expect the expertise of our task force members will provide the insights and strategies needed to prevent harassment from occurring in more workplaces in the first place."

The Select Task Force's members are:

  • Sahar F. Aziz, Associate Professor of Law, Texas A&M University
  • Meg A. Bond, Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Women and Work, University of Massachusetts Lowell
  • Jerry Carbo, Associate Professor of Management and Marketing, Shippensburg University
  • Manuel Cuevas-Trisán, Vice President, Litigation, Data Protection & Employment Law, Motorola Solutions, Inc.
  • Frank Dobbin, Professor of Sociology, Harvard University
  • Stephen C. Dwyer, General Counsel, American Staffing Association
  • Brenda Feis, Partner, Feis Goldy LLC
  • Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment, National Women's Law Center
  • Ariane Hegewisch, Study Director, Institute for Women's Policy Research
  • Christopher Ho, Senior Staff Attorney and Director, Immigration and National Origin Program, Legal Aid Society - Employment Law Center
  • Thomas A. Saenz, President & General Counsel, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund
  • Jonathan A. Segal, Partner, Duane Morris and Managing Principal, Duane Morris Institute
  • Joseph M. Sellers, Partner, Cohen Milstein
  • Angelia Wade Stubbs, Associate General Counsel, AFL-CIO
  • Rae T. Vann, General Counsel, Equal Employment Advisory Council
  • Patricia A. Wise, Partner, Niehaus, Wise & Kalas; Co-Chair, Society for Human Resource Management Labor Relations Special Expertise Panel

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting discrimination in employment. More information about the EEOC is available at