Labor & Employment Partner Darrell Gay Testifies at EEOC 50th Anniversary Meeting in Washington, DC
Mr. Gay was asked by Chair Jenny R, Yang to provide information on the steps employers are taking to foster an environment free of discrimination and also to give commentary on the EEOC from the perspective of employers.
Mr. Gay shared with the Commission and guests how employers are effectively using policies, training, diversity programs, and outreach efforts to create a more diverse work environment. “Employers are developing and implementing policies that prohibit discrimination and encourage environments of respect,” said Mr. Gay during his testimony. “Having these policies is of little value if they are not understood or if there is a lack of understanding of what should be done when pertinent issues develop. This requires the use of effective and client specific training programs.”
Mr. Gay also provided recommendations on the EEOC’s work, including the necessity of neutrality, understanding the uniqueness of each case and employer, fostering a cooperative approach, and limiting implicit bias. “The EEOC must maintain a level of credibility with both those who advocate for employees and those who advocate on behalf of employers,” said Mr. Gay. “As a governmental body charged with law enforcement it is my perspective that the EEOC has to be viewed as neutral as it applies to employees and employers, while making it clear that it takes the job of enforcing our employment laws extremely seriously.”
Mr. Gay is a recognized leader in legal circles, having been one of the founding board members of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, a founding member and long standing leader of the National Employment Law Council, an early chair of the National Bar Association’s Commercial Law Section, a chair of the National Bar Association’s Labor Law Section, and a founding board member of the NYC Metropolitan Black Bar Association. Mr. Gay is also a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers and listed among the Best Lawyers in America for Employment Law - Management,; International Who’s Who of Labour and Employment Lawyers; and New York Super Lawyers. This marked Mr. Gay’s second time appearing before the EEOC, having testified in 2007 at the launch of the E-Race initiative against workplace discrimination.
Mr. Gay represents corporate and government clients in traditional labor matters and advises management with respect to all issues related to employee issues, including but not limited to employment discrimination, wage and hour matters, and restrictive covenants. He frequently serves as chief negotiator for his clients during collective-bargaining sessions and provides counsel to employers with respect to cross border issues and employment issues outside of the US.
With more than 35 attorneys, Arent Fox’s Labor & Employment practice helps public and private companies, nonprofits, and international corporations avoid and solve legal workplace problems across a range of industries, including health care, utilities, hospitality, real estate, construction, sports, entertainment, insurance, technology, education, retail, professional services, food service and products, finance, and manufacturing.