Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. It is also illegal to discriminate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit.
Most employers with at least 15 employees are covered by EEOC laws (20 employees in age discrimination cases). Most labor unions and employment agencies are also covered.
The laws apply to all types of work situations, including hiring, firing, promotions, harassment, training, wages, and benefits.
The EEOC has the authority to investigate charges of discrimination against employers who are covered by the law. The EEOC’s role in an investigation is to fairly and accurately assess the allegations in the charge and then make a finding.
Seattle Field Office, Federal Office Building, 909 First Avenue, Suite 400, Seattle, WA 98104-1061
The Seattle Field Office is open Monday - Friday from 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Helpful EEOC links:
- How to file your EEOC charge
- When to file your EEOC charge
- Should you mediate with the EEOC
- What information is publicly accessible
Washington State Human Rights Commission (WSHRC)
Established in 1949, the Washington State Human Rights Commission (WSHRC) enforces the Washington State Law Against Discrimination. RCW Chapter 49.60 is a State law that protects all people in Washington from unfair and discriminatory practices in employment, real estate transactions, public accommodations, credit, insurance, as well as health care whistleblower, and state employee whistleblower complaints.
Olympia Headquarters, 711 S. Capitol Way, Suite 402, Olympia, WA 98504-2490
Seattle Tel: 1-800-233-3247
Helpful WSHRC links
The Unemployment Law Project
The Unemployment Law Project provides low-cost representation and free advice and counsel to people in Washington State who have been denied unemployment benefits or whose award of benefits is being challenged.
1904 Third Avenue, Suite 604, Seattle, WA 98101
Toll Free: 1-888-441-9178
Hours: Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm
Washington Employment Lawyers Association (WELA)
WELA's mission is to enforce and advance employee rights, in recognition that employment with dignity and fairness is fundamental to the quality of life. WELA does this by promoting and increasing public awareness of the rights of individual employees; enhancing the quality of legal representation of employees; advocating for employee rights before courts and legislative bodies; and assisting and supporting members in their practice of plaintiffs’ employment law.
WELA is comprised of attorneys, law professors, paralegals and law students devoted to the promotion of employee rights.
18 W Mercer St. Suite 400, Seattle WA 98119
Helpful WELA links
Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I)
L&I is a diverse state agency dedicated to the safety, health and security of Washington's 3.2 million workers. L&I helps employers meet safety and health standards and it inspects workplaces when alerted to hazards. As administrators of the state's workers' compensation system, L&I is similar to a large insurance company, providing medical and limited wage-replacement coverage to workers who suffer job-related injuries and illness. Their rules and enforcement programs also help ensure workers are paid what they are owed, that children's and teens' work hours are limited, and that consumers are protected from unsound building practices.
Washington State Department of Labor & Industries, P.O. Box 44000, Olympia, WA 98504-4000
Helpful L&I links