In an approach similar to class-action lawsuits, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is now pursuing what it calls Class Charges—disability and age discrimination claims that deal with multiple employees in one location or spread out geographically.

The institution of a Class Charge is simple enough: When employees file claims for disability or age discrimination (or for any other form) against their employer, they need only ask the investigator to insert a Class allegation into the Charge.

One of the reasons for this bundling is that the EEOC has reported a sharp rise in disability and age discrimination claims. In 2010 the agency received roughly 25,000 disability discrimination claims, along with 23,000 age discrimination allegations.

In addition to casting a wide net with Class Charges, the EEOC is also actively seeking cases dealing with discrimination arising from background and credit checks, which the agency claims have a disparate impact on minorities.

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