- The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will delay the opening of its 2019 EEO-1 Component 1 data collection, as well as the 2020 EEO-3 and EEO-5 data collections due to the novel coronavirus, the agency announced May 7.
- The delay will allow filers to be "better positioned to provide accurate, valid and reliable data in a timely manner," EEOC said in a press release. Filers include private employers, unions and public school districts — entities that are "dealing with unique and urgent issues" due to the pandemic.
- The agency encouraged filers to prepare data submissions for 2021. It will collect 2019 and 2020 EEO-1 Component 1 in March 2021, pending approval from the White House's Office of Management and Budget. Collection for the 2020 EEO-3 and the 2020 EEO-5 will likely begin in January 2021.
While employers have been subject to much drama concerning Component 2 of EEO-1, which asks about pay data, EEOC's delay interrupts the more established, routine process of EEO-1 Component 1.
The EEO-1 report itself is a survey that collects employment data organized by race and ethnicity, gender and job category, EEOC says. In 2020, EEOC planned to launch its 2019 EEO-1 Component 1 survey, the employer information report, which companies subject to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 with 100 or more employees are required to submit. Filings for this survey are generally due no later than May 31, but the agency had not yet opened collection, as it was seeking approval from OMB.
EEOC's other delays apply to smaller sections of employers. EEO-3 collects "reports from all Local Union which indicate the composition for their work forces by sex and by race/ethnic category," EEOC says. And EEO-5 requests similar information from all public elementary and secondary school districts.
Component 2 collection was already suspended, following a tumultuous period for that initiative. OMB had blocked its collection in 2017 but a federal district court judge put the requirements back into effect, staying the decision in March 2019.
EEOC has said it may adopt pay data reporting requirements again in the future and is expected to publish an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking in September 2020 followed by a two-month-long comment period. Despite the many hurdles Component 2 has faced, officials have emphasized the importance of pay data collection.