EEOC and Family Dollar Stores Sign Mediation Pact

WASHINGTON– The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Family Dollar Stores, Inc. (NYSE:FDO) today announced the signing of a National Universal Agreement to Mediate (NUAM) to informally resolve workplace disputes through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) prior to an EEOC investigation or potential litigation. The NUAM applies to all Family Dollar establishments throughout the United States.

Under the terms of the NUAM, all eligible charges of discrimination filed with the EEOC in which Family Dollar Stores is named as an employer/respondent will be referred to the EEOC’s mediation unit, as appropriate. The company will designate a corporate representative to handle all inquiries and other logistical matters related to potential charges in order to facilitate a prompt scheduling of the matter for EEOC mediation.

“Nationwide mediation agreements like this are a classic win-win,” said Nicholas Inzeo, Director of the EEOC’s Office of Field Programs. “NUAMs are a non-adversarial and efficient way for companies to handle discrimination charges using the EEOC as a partner and advisor. EEOC mediation encourages a positive work environment, and the company saves time and money. Everyone benefits.”

“Being a compelling place to work means giving all of our Team Members the opportunity to be heard,” said Bryan Venberg, Senior Vice President, Human Resources. “Leveraging the opportunity to mediate through EEOC’s mediation program provides all parties the opportunity for a fair resolution to any workplace charges.”

Expanding mediation is a key component of the EEOC’s efforts to improve operational efficiency and effectiveness. The EEOC has entered into 257 national and regional Universal Agreements to Mediate (UAMs) with private sector employers, including several Fortune 500 companies. Additionally, EEOC district offices have entered into approximately 1,850 mediation agreements with employers at the local levels within their respective jurisdictions. Since the full implementation of the EEOC’s National Mediation Program in April 1999, more than 148,000 charges of employment discrimination have been mediated, with over 70% being successfully resolved.

Beginning with one store in Charlotte, N. C., in 1959, Family Dollar currently operates more than 7,200 stores in 45 states. Family Dollar Stores, Inc., a Fortune 300 company, is based in Matthews, N. C., just outside of Charlotte, and is a publicly held corporation with common stock traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol FDO. For more information, please visit

EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC and its mediation program is available on its web site at