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.
EEOImpact Public News
You MUST be a logged in registered member of EEO Impact
to view private membership NEWS.
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR SECRETARY HILDA SOLIS SAYS OFCCP CAN OBTAIN CLASS RELIEF WITHOUT CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT
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.
Reps. Hank Johnson (D-GA) and Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) introduced a bill (The Fair Employment Opportunity Act) July 12 that would prohibit employers and employment agencies from discriminating against unemployed job-seekers by refusing to consider them for employment. The bill would also prohibit employers from including language in any job advertisements or postings that states unemployed individuals are not qualified. “Reps. Johnson, DeLauro Right to Ensure Fair Employment Opportunities,” Press Release, 7/12/11.
The OFCCP held a live web chat July 12 to discuss its regulatory agenda.
In response to a question about whether OFCCP intended to withdraw its proposed veterans rule in light of the joint request letter from several employer associations, Director Shiu said the OFCCP would not withdraw the Section 4212 NPRM. She said, “The proposed rule is just that – proposed, not final – and was clear in actively seeking the specialized knowledge and input of all interested parties. OFCCP welcomes these various perspectives and believes that they will assist us in developing a Final Rule that achieves the goal of increasing employment opportunities for protected veterans while not creating undue burdens for contractors.”
The text of the live webchat is available on the Department of Labor website at: http://www.dol.gov/regulations/chat-ofccp-201107.htm.
The House Workforce Protections Subcommittee will hold a hearing on July 14 entitled “The FLSA: Is It Meeting the Needs of the Twenty-First Century?” The witness list has not yet been released.
The OFCCP has released its Semi-Annual Regulatory Agenda:
- DOL/OFCCP Prerule Stage Non Discrimination in Compensation: Compensation Data Collection Tool 1250-AA03 – Proposed Rule scheduled June 2012
- DOL/OFCCP Proposed Rule Stage Affirmative Action and Nondiscrimination Obligations of Contractors and Subcontractors; Evaluation of Recruitment and Placement Results Under the VEVRAA of 1974, As Amended 1250-AA00
- DOL/OFCCP Proposed Rule Stage Construction Contractor Affirmative Action Requirements 1250-AA01
- DOL/OFCCP Proposed Rule Stage Affirmative Action and Nondiscrimination Obligations of Contractors and Subcontractors: Evaluation of Recruitment and Placement Results Under Section 503 1250-AA02 – Proposed Rule scheduled August 2011
- DOL/OFCCP Proposed Rule Stage Sex Discrimination Guidelines 1250-AA05 – Proposed rule scheduled February 2012. The abstract for the proposed rulemaking on the Sex Discrimination Guidelines follows: Abstract: The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is charged with enforcing Executive Order 11246, as amended, which prohibits Federal Government contractors and subcontractors from discriminating against individuals in employment on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, or national origin, and requires them to take affirmative action. OFCCP regulations at 41 CFR part 60-20 set forth the interpretations and guidelines for implementing Executive Order 11246, as amended, in regards to promoting and ensuring equal opportunities for all persons employed or seeking employment with Government contractors and subcontractors without regard to sex. This nondiscrimination requirement also applies to contractors and subcontractors performing under federally assisted construction contracts. The guidance in part 60-20 is more than 30 years old. OFCCP will issue a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to create sex discrimination regulations that reflect the current state of the law in this area.
OFCCP has scheduled a live webchat for Tuesday, July 12 from 1:00-2:00pm EDT to discuss OFCCPs regulatory agenda and answer questions. You can join the chat by going to: www.dol.gov/regulations.
Director Patricia Shiu posted her view on the Department of Labor blog that the federal government is doing its part to hire veterans, and OFCCP expects those companies that profit from government contracts to have the same commitment. She points to a report by the Council on Veterans’ Employment, which reports the federal government actually increased both the percentage and actual number of its veteran hires for FY 2010, despite a decrease in overall government hiring.
“A Promise to Keep,” Department of Labor Blog, 6/30/11.
Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-Maryland) and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) introduced the “Women and Workforce Investment for Nontraditional Jobs (S. 1252) in the Senate on June 23. A companion bill was introduced in the House by Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colorado) and Rep. Rosa DeLaura (D-Connecticut). The legislation would authorize $100 million in state grants to help recruit, prepare, place and retain women in high-demand, high-wage nontraditional jobs, where women currently constitute 25 percent or less of the workforce. A link to the legislation is here.
Experts testifying at an EEOC public meeting June 22 said deliberate discrimination against job seekers remains a major national problem. EEOC General Counsel P. David Lopez said that “discriminatory hiring practices such as conformity to discriminatory customer preferences, employing prohibited stereotypes about jobs, and targeted recruitment procedures aimed at only attracting certain racial or national origin group member applicants, continue to exist.” “Disparate Treatment in Hiring Remains Major Problem, Experts Tell EEOC,” EEOC Press Release, 6/22/11. A link to the written witness statements from the EEOC meeting is here.
OFCCP has finally released the long-awaited updated directive on its Functional Affirmative Action Program (FAAP), which Director Patricia Shiu has determined is a useful tool. The new directive has made significant changes to the process, including requiring written approval by the OFCCP director before contractors can begin developing FAAP agreements, thereby eliminating the provision for automatic approval if OFCCP failed to act upon the request within 120 days. In addition, the expiration date for each agreement has been changed from three years to five years, at which point a renewal will have to be approved. The possibility of a compliance evaluation has been added should contractors fail to submit the required annual updates to their agreements. All contractors who currently have an approved FAAP agreement will be required to renew it in accordance with the new guidance. A link to the OFCCP news release and the directive is here. A link to the FAQ is here.