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Archive for the ‘Regulation’ Category

OFCCP DIRECTOR PATRICIA SHIU ISSUES NOTICE EXTENDING SECTION 503 NPRM COMMENT PERIOD

February 7th, 2012 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

OFCCP Director Patricia Shiu signed a notice February 6 for a 14-day extension of the comment period for the proposed Section 503 regulation.  Comments on the proposed rule were previously required by February 7.

The notice states the comment period is being extended because OFCCP had “determined that the public could use additional time to review the potential impact of the proposed requirements.”

Previously on January 24, OFCCP sent letters to several organizations, including EEOIMPACT, denying their requests for an extension.

A copy of the extension notice (“503 NPRM Comment Period Extended to February 21st”) is available on OFCCP’s website under Latest Events and News at:  http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/.

This information is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.

Categories: Disability, OFCCP, Regulation

HOUSE SUBCOMMITTEE SEEKS DATA FROM OFCCP REGARDING ITS PROPOSED SECTION 503 RULE RELATED TO INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES

January 31st, 2012 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

John Kline (R-MN), Chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce and Phil Roe (R-TN), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, sent a letter to DOL Secretary Hilda Solis on January 27, 2012 requesting “additional information to clarify issues raised in connection with OFCCP’s proposed rule regarding individuals with disabilities.  They also requested a 90-day extension of the public comment period for the review of the additional information.

The letter requests OFCCP provide all documents and communications from OFCCP, the Office of the Solicitor, or any other agency, related to six specific inquiries outlined in the letter.

For a link to the full letter:  “Letter to Secretary Solis on Proposed Regulation Affecting Workers With Disabilities and Federal Contractors,” 1/27/12.

This information is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice.  You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.

Categories: Congress, OFCCP, Regulation

EEOIMPACT SEEKS EXTENSION OF COMMENT PERIOD FOR PROPOSED RULES GOVERNING FEDERAL CONTRACTOR HIRING OF INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES

January 3rd, 2012 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

EEOIMPACT sent a letter on December 20, 2011 to the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) of the U.S. Department of Labor seeking an extension of 45 days beyond the current February 7 deadline to file comments on its notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) on affirmative action and nondiscrimination obligations of contractors and subcontractors regarding individuals with disabilities.

“OFCCP’s proposed rule to revise Section 503 regulations is very important, and it deserves an in-depth analysis and thoughtful response. It will be difficult, however, for federal contractors both large and small to analyze what the proposed rule would require, understand how the proposed rule would impact their policies, programs and procedures, and to provide meaningful comment of value to the OFCCP within the current timeframe. What makes it particularly difficult is that this regulatory initiative comes just as human resource staffs and other functional organizations are in the midst of taking scheduled year-end vacations, celebrating religious or secular holidays, or are otherwise engaged in department initiatives, including preparation of their 2012 affirmative action plans, an activity that will carry over well into January.”

Other requests for extensions of the comment period are anticipated.

OFCCP SCHEDULES WEBINARS TO REVIEW PROPOSED SECTION 503 REGULATIONS

December 17th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

The OFCCP has announced that it will hold two webinars to review its recently proposed Section 503 regulation.

The webinars are scheduled for December 20 and December 21 at 2:00pm Eastern.

The OFCCP has announced that during the presentation Policy Branch Chief Naomi Levin will review the highlights of the NPRM and tell how the public can provide comments on the proposed rule.

According to OFCCP, Ms. Levin joined the Department of Labor in May of 2008, after more than 20 years as a Senior Attorney at EEOC.  Her accomplishments at EEOC include co-authoring the Commission’s original ADA regulations, conducting numerous ADA and Rehabilitation Act trainings around the country, and serving as a Special Assistant and advisor to two EEOC Commissioners.

Registration information is available at https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/363191569 and https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/538846432.

OFCCP POSTS NEW FAQS REGARDING PROPOSED RULE ON SECTION 503

December 14th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

The OFCCP has posted an FAQ on its recently proposed rule regarding Section 503.

Much of the recent discussion in the federal contractor community regarding the proposed rule has centered on the “utilization goal.”  Here is what OFCCP says about the utilization goal in its FAQ:

“The NPRM proposes to establish a national utilization goal of 7 percent for the employment of individuals with disabilities in each job group of the contractor’s workforce. OFCCP invites public comment on this proposed goal, and on the potential use of a utilization range of between 4 percent and 10 percent in lieu of a single national utilization goal.

To annually evaluate their utilization of individuals with disabilities, the NPRM proposes that contractors use the job groups established for utilization analyses under Executive Order (E.O. 11246). The proposed goal is derived primarily from disability data collected as part of the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS). (Visit http://www.census.gov/acs/www/ for additional information about the ACS.)

The goal is neither a quota nor a hiring ceiling, and a failure to attain the goal does not constitute a violation of Section 503 or OFCCP’s regulations. Rather, the goal will provide both contractors and OFCCP with a quantifiable measure for assessing success in recruiting and employing individuals with disabilities. It is a tool to help identify any remaining barriers to equal employment.”

The complete FAQ is available here.

Also reference:  “OFCCP Publishes Proposal to Improve Job Opportunities for Individuals with Disabilities” OFCCP website.

OFCCP RELEASES LONG-AWAITED PROPOSED RULE ON SECTION 503; INCLUDES HIRING GOAL OF 7 PERCENT

December 9th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

The OFCCP’s proposed new rule to strengthen the affirmative action requirements established in Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is published in today’s edition of the Federal Register.

A link to the proposed rule is here.

Public comments on the proposed rule are due by February 7, 2012.

DOL SECRETARY HILDA SOLIS AND OFCCP DIRECTOR PAT SHIU APPLAUD OFCCP PROPOSED RULE ON SECTION 503; PROPOSAL WILL INCLUDE HIRING GOAL OF 7 PERCENT

December 8th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

The U.S. Department of Labor has announced that OFCCP’s proposed new rule to strengthen the affirmative action requirements established in Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 will be published in the December 9 edition of the Federal Register.

According to an OFCCP news release, the proposed rule would require federal contractors and subcontractors to set a hiring goal of having 7 percent of their workforces be people with disabilities, among other requirements.  OFCCP says establishing a 7 percent hiring goal for the employment of individuals with disabilities would be a tool for contractors to measure the effectiveness of their affirmative action efforts and thereby inform their decision-making.

OFCCP also says the proposed regulatory changes detail specific actions contractors must take in the areas of recruitment, training, record keeping and policy dissemination – similar to those that have long been required to promote workplace quality for women and minorities.

This proposed rule represents one of the most significant advances in protecting the civil rights of workers with disabilities since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “President Obama has demonstrated a commitment to people with disabilities. This proposed rule would help federal contractors better fulfill their legal responsibility to hire qualified workers with disabilities.”

“For nearly 40 years, the rules have said that contractors simply need to make a ‘good faith’ effort to recruit and hire people with disabilities. Clearly, that’s not working,” said OFCCP Director Patricia A. Shiu. “Our proposal would define specific goals, require real accountability and provide the clearest possible guidance for employers seeking to comply with the law. What gets measured gets done. And we’re in the business of getting things done.”

According to the OFCCP news release, the proposed rule also would enhance data collection and record-keeping requirements — including for documentation and processing of requests for reasonable accommodation — in order to improve accountability. Additionally, it would ensure annual self-reviews of employers’ recruitment and outreach efforts, and add a new requirement for contractors to list job openings to increase their pools of qualified applicants.

For more information:  “US Labor Department Seeks To Improve Job Opportunities For Americans With Disabilities By Setting Historic Hiring Goal For Federal Contractors And Subcontractors,” OFCCP News Release.

OFCCP’s RELEASE OF ITS PROPOSED RULE TO AMEND SECTION 503 IS IMMINENT

December 7th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is expected to release at any time its proposed rule amending Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act.  The White House Office of Management & Budget completed its review of the proposed rule on November 30, 2011.  The proposed rule is expected to strengthen the affirmative action and nondiscrimination obligations of contractors and subcontractors under Section 503.

EEOC SCHEDULES MEETING TO DISCUSS ARREST AND CONVICTION RECORDS AS BARRIER TO EMPLOYMENT

July 20th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

The EEOC has announced a public meeting scheduled July 26 at 9:30am Eastern in Washington DC to discuss the issue of arrest and conviction records as a barrier to employment. A link to the Federal Register notice is here. The witness list for this meeting is here.

Categories: EEOC, Regulation

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR SECRETARY HILDA SOLIS SAYS OFCCP CAN OBTAIN CLASS RELIEF WITHOUT CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT

July 20th, 2011 Patricia Schaeffer Comments off

Department of Labor Secretary Hilda Solis announced the OFCCP does not need to follow Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 in order to seek class-type remedies and relief.  Speaking before the National Employment Lawyers Association’s 22nd Annual Convention in New Orleans on July 1, Solis said that “[OFCCP] can obtain class-wide relief for victims of pay discrimination without having to file a class action lawsuit.” Solis also said the OFCCP is “dramatically shifting” its enforcement priorities, in part by increasing pay equity investigations from 14 percent last year to 20-40 percent this year.

A link to the text of the Secretary’s speech is here.