As an employer it is important to understand position statement procedures. Doing so allows employers to make a good first impression with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in response to a charge of discrimination. To summarize an article from SHRM, here are three must know procedures:
- Be Specific. As an employer you shouldn’t take restraint in the position statement too far. It is common for HR to be tempted to speak in generalities. However, attorney Stanley Pitts stated, “Being vague in your statement will only make the investigator push and prolong the investigation. Also know that the EEOC can redact confidential information prior to releasing the information to the charging party.
- Label Separate Attachments. It is important that position statement refers to, but does not identify, confidential information. Make sure to include attachments that are labeled as such:
- Sensitive Medical Information
- Sensitive medical information.
- Confidential commercial information.
- Confidential financial information.
- Trade secret information.
Ensure that each attachment is explained in depth to provide a clear understanding. Information that should be put into separate attachments includes:
- Social Security Numbers.
- Date of birth in nonage cases.
- Home addresses, personal phone numbers and personal e-mail addresses.
- Any reference to charges filed against the respondent by other charging parties.
- Consider Previous Recommendations. Take into consideration past suggestions and procedures in order to form the best possible statement. Prior tips have included:
- Address each alleged discriminatory act in the charge and the employer’s position regarding it.
- Provide copies of documents supporting the employer’s position and/or version of the events.
- Be specific about dates, actions and locations applicable to the case.
Position statements are critical in making a good first impression. By learning the position statement procedure you can be better prepared for a charge of discrimination. However, it is also important to make sure that your position statement does not overshare.