After over 10 years without an update (the last update being November 2009), the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has replaced the familiar “Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law” poster hanging in the breakrooms of most covered employers[1] with the new “Know Your Rights: Workplace Discrimination is Illegal” poster. EEOC regulations require covered employers to post notices that summarize the rights of employees and union members under applicable federal anti-discrimination laws enforced by the EEOC. [2]

The new EEOC poster contains a QR code for applicants or employees that links directly to instructions on how to file a charge of workplace discrimination with the EEOC,  a copy of which can be found at the EEOC’s webpage here, along with information on where to display the poster.

The new poster is touted as containing “plain language” that makes clear that harassment is a form of discrimination, and as making it “easier for employers to understand their legal responsibilities and for workers to understand their legal rights and how to contact EEOC for assistance.”

Further, the new poster makes it clear that sex discrimination includes discrimination based on pregnancy and related conditions, sexual orientation, or gender identity, and contains information about equal pay discrimination for federal contractors.

The poster is currently available in both English and Spanish and will soon be available in additional languages.

Employers should hang the posters in a conspicuous location in the workplace where notices to applicants and employees are customarily posted. The EEOC also “encourages” employers to post the notice digitally on their websites to supplement the physical posting requirement. The federal Americans with Disabilities Act also requires that the poster be placed in a location accessible to applicants and employees with disabilities that limit mobility.

There are fines for noncompliance, which are currently capped at $612 for each separate offense.[3] Accordingly, employers should print and post the posters to be in compliance with the law. Please contact us for guidance or with any questions.

[1] A “covered” employer is defined under federal law as an employer with fifteen or more employees. 42 U.S.C. 2000e(b).

[2] 29 CFR 1601.30(a).

[3] 29 CFR 1601.30(b).