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January 21 2015

Bills Seek To Blunt EEOC Activities

Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections, introduced two bills on September 10 aimed at curbing the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's authority. The first measure, theLitigation Oversight Act of 2014 (H.R. 5422), would require the EEOC to approve, by majority vote, all lawsuits or interventions in lawsuits involving multiple plaintiffs or an allegation of systemic discrimination or a pattern or practice of discrimination. The new legislation would make it more difficult for the EEOC to pursue this initiative, although it is not expected to advance. The second measure, the Certainty in Enforcement Act of 2014 (H.R. 5423), takes aim at the EEOC's updated 2012 enforcement guidance on criminal background checks. Many in the business community have faulted the EEOC's stance regarding an employer's consideration of an applicant's criminal record in making hiring decisions. Both bills have been referred to committee.