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EEOC Dallas Office Accused of Discrimination

USA Today investigated allegations of discrimination coming from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) Dallas, Texas office. According to the report, more than a dozen current and former EEOC employees claim the agency treated them unfairly through its promotions, discipline, and denial of training opportunities. Some employees alleged they were forced to resign. Many of the allegations came from Black employees who claimed the agency disciplined them for trivial matters, such as parking issues or for addressing corporate attorneys by their first name. Some employees shared their concerns with leaders at EEOC headquarters, but the EEOC did not act in response. One investigator was reprimanded and suspended for writing #BlackLivesMatter in an email to many coworkers. Another investigator, an openly gay war veteran, lost his job within days of filing a discrimination complaint.

Internal EEOC data obtained by the newspaper show that in the four years from 2015 to 2019, Black workers from Texas filed over 7,100 racial discrimination claims with the Dallas office. The office investigated and substantiated just 13 of those claims.

The EEOC announced plans to review the allegations laid out in the USA Today reporting, having ordered a “climate assessment” of the Dallas office. In a meeting with the Dallas staff, employees learned very little about how the agency would address their concerns but received veiled warnings about speaking with reporters. Dallas head Belinda McCallister, accused by employees of allowing the harassment and discrimination, asserted her commitment to providing a workplace free of discrimination. She recommended employees refer media inquiries to the national headquarters. The Texas and the National chapters of the NAACP issued statements against the EEOC’s handling of cases reflected in the USA Today article.