U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission chair Janet Dhillon will pursue an agenda that stresses helping companies comply with agency regulations.
Dhillon said her priorities for 2020 are providing excellent customer service and robust compliance assistance.
"The first word in the EEOC's mission statement is 'prevent,' and everyone's work at the commission contributes to the goal of preventing discrimination in the workplace," the EEOC said in a statement containing Dhillon's 2020 priorities.
It's expected that Dhillon, a former executive and general counsel with Burlington Stores who became chair in May, will steer the EEOC toward an approach that favors mediation over enforcement.
One of her top priorities is continuing to provide robust compliance assistance.
Dhillon said the EEOC will accomplish this by:
- Providing high-quality, easy to understand education and outreach in the private, public, and federal sectors
- Prioritizing outreach to the small business community
- Continuing to build strong partnerships with employer and advocacy groups
- Updating guidance and technical assistance documents, where appropriate, to ensure they clearly explain the law, and rescinding documents that are out-of-date, may be confusing, or exceed the commission's statutory authority
- Ensuring the commission actively monitors and tracks compliance elements in settlement and conciliation agreements, and consent decrees
She said the agency's top priority will be handling complaints promptly and fairly.
Dhillon also vowed to embrace technology to improve service; update data collection, analysis, and reporting to facilitate data-driven decisions; and support front-line employees so they can focus on customer service.
Another priority is enhancing efforts to reach vulnerable workers.
"During 2020, we will re-examine our efforts to reach vulnerable workers in our society and make adjustments as necessary to ensure that we are identifying, reaching, and effectively serving—through outreach, enforcement, and litigation—vulnerable workers throughout the nation's workforce," the agency said.