Senate Committee Greenlights Kalpana Kotagal for EEOC Commission Post—and NWLC Urges Senate to Swiftly Hold Vote

(Washington, D.C.)  Today—almost a year after Kalpana Kotagal was initially nominated to serve on the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the nation’s workplace civil rights agency—the Senate’s top labor panel was finally able to greenlight her nomination to join the EEOC.  The Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee voted 11-10 along party lines on Kotagal’s nomination to fill an empty seat on the commission.

On March 24, the National Women’s Law Center and The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights sent a letter that was signed by over 120 national organizations to the Senate HELP Committee in support of Kotagal’s nomination.

The following is a statement by Gaylynn Burroughs, NWLC Director of Workplace Equality:

“Today’s committee vote brings good news to workers across the country since Kalpana Kotagal is one step closer to having the Senate vote on her nomination to the EEOC, our chief workplace civil rights agency. Kotagal’s extensive legal track record of identifying and confronting systemic injustices experienced by workers across industries position her as an effective EEOC Commissioner who will tenaciously uphold workers’ rights—especially those who are most vulnerable.

“At the National Women’s Law Center, we often hear from women who have faced workplace sexual harassment, discrimination, and retaliation who are seeking legal assistance. The majority are low-paid workers—and many are dealing with sexual abuse on the job, along with the economic fallout and mental health repercussions that routinely follow. For these women, having a strong EEOC is critical. We urge the Senate to move quickly to confirm Kotagal who will champion the rights of all workers.”