RSS Feed!

Archives

Archive for October, 2018

EEOC CONVENES PUBLIC MEETING ON STEPS TO TRANSFORM WORKPLACE CULTURE TO PREVENT HARASSMENT

Monday, October 22nd, 2018

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will hold a public meeting on Wednesday, October 31, from 9:30 a.m. to noon ET at agency headquarters, 131 M Street, N.E. Washington, D.C. The meeting, entitled “Revamping Workplace Culture to Prevent Harassment,” will be open to public observation.

Earlier this month, the EEOC released preliminary fiscal year 2018 data reporting increases in harassment charges and litigation. Hits on the EEOC’s harassment webpage doubled since the start of the #MeToo movement one year ago.

In the Co-Chairs’ 2016 Report of the Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace, EEOC issued recommendations to employers on the key components (leadership, accountability, policies, procedures, and training) for changing an organization’s culture and preventing harassment. During this meeting, witnesses will discuss these components and how they can be used to foster civil, respectful, and harassment-free workplaces. The Commission will hear from the following panelists during the meeting:

• David Bowman, Morgan Lewis
• Rob Buelow, EVERFI
• Mary Gentile, Giving Voice to Values/ University of Virginia, Darden School of Business
• Christine Porath, Georgetown University, McDonough School of Business
• Alejandra Valles & Veronica Giron, Service Employees International Union West and Ya Basta Campaign
• Anne Walestad, Boardsource

Seating is limited. Visitors are encouraged to arrive at least 30 minutes before the meeting to be processed through security and escorted to the meeting room. Visitors should bring a government-issued photo identification card to facilitate entry into the building.

The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.

Labor Department’s OFCCP and Women’s Bureau: The Leadership in Equal Access and Diversity Award Proposal is Open for Public Comment (Oct. 2018)

Friday, October 19th, 2018

OFCCP and the Women’s Bureau are joining efforts to recognize contractor best practices in comprehensive equal employment opportunity and nondiscrimination programs. The proposed Leadership in Equal Access and Diversity Award (LEAD) will recognize supply and service contractors that go above and beyond in creating and implementing programs of inclusion and fair treatment in the workplace, regardless of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran, and recognize the importance of fairness in compensation practices and pay transparency.

OFCCP hears you. This proposed award reflects OFCCP’s consideration of the feedback offered by contractors and other stakeholders during various meetings and listening sessions. During many of these sessions, stakeholders expressed an interest in the agency finding ways to identify and publicly recognize contractor best practices for providing equal employment opportunity and supporting nondiscrimination in employment practices.

Where can you learn more about the award? The proposed structure and details of the recognition program are published in today’s Federal Register. You can read the formal notice, supporting statement, and see a draft of the award nomination form and instructions here.

Tell us what you think. You can provide any comments or suggestions you have for the new program via www.regulations.gov. The last day to submit comments on this proposal is December 18, 2018.

OFCCP’s HIRE Vets Medallion Program (Oct. 2018)

Friday, October 19th, 2018

As a valued OFCCP subscriber, we want to provide you with important information about the U.S. Department of Labor’s new HIRE Vets Medallion Award. Created by legislation signed by President Trump in 2017, the HIRE Vets Medallion Award is the only federal veterans’ employment award that recognizes small, medium, and large employers’ commitment to veteran hiring, retention, and professional development.

Want to learn more about the award?

Visit HireVets.gov to learn if your company is eligible to receive the HIRE Vets Medallion Award.

Sign up to receive email updates on the HIRE Vets Medallion Program.

The U.S. Department of Labor will be accepting applications beginning in January 2019 for the HIRE Vets Medallion Award – the ONLY federal award for veteran hiring.

Have questions about the HIRE Vets Medallion Award? Please visit HireVets.gov or contact HIREVets@dol.gov.

DOJ reaches agreement with The Place of Antiques to ensure equal access for individuals with disabilities who use service dogs (Oct. 2018)

Sunday, October 14th, 2018

The Justice Department reached an agreement under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) with The Place of Antiques in St. Regis, Montana to resolve a complaint under title III of the ADA. The Department’s investigation substantiated the complaint that staff at The Place of Antiques asked a veteran who uses a service dog to leave because no dogs are allowed in the store. Public accommodations such as The Place of Antiques must permit individuals who use service dogs, including veterans with disabilities who use service dogs for disabilities including post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, or mobility disabilities, into their establishments.

The settlement agreement requires The Place of Antiques to adopt and implement a service dog policy consistent with the ADA; provide training on the service dog policy to employees and managers; and post the service dog policy in its shop and on social media for the shop. The Place of Antiques cooperated with the Department throughout the investigation.

People interested in finding out more about the ADA or this agreement may access the ADA website at https://www.ada.gov/infoline.htm or call the toll-free ADA Information Line at 1-800-514-0301 or 1-800-514-0383 (TDD).

NEW ‘DIGEST OF EEO LAW’ ISSUED BY EEOC (Oct. 14, 2018)

Sunday, October 14th, 2018

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced the latest edition of its federal sector Digest of Equal Employment Opportunity Law (EEO Digest), which is available on the EEOC’s website.

“The Digest of EEO Law is a great resource for the federal sector EEO community,” said Carlton Hadden, Director of OFO. “We welcome your comments or suggestions for future topics by emailing us at federalsectorEEO@eeoc.gov.”

The EEO Digest, a quarterly publication prepared by OFO, features a wide variety of recent Commission decisions and federal court cases of interest. The Digest also includes hyperlinks so that stakeholders can easily access the full decisions which have been summarized. This edition of the Digest contains summaries of noteworthy decisions issued by EEOC, including cases involving: Compensatory Damages, Complaint Processing, Dismissals, Findings on the Merits, Mixed Motive, Remedies, Sanctions, Settlement Agreements, Stating a Claim, Summary Judgment, and Timeliness.

The summaries are neither intended to be exhaustive or definitive as to the selected subject matter, nor are they to be given the legal weight of case law in citations. In addition to the quarterly Digest, Commission federal sector decisions are available on the EEOC’s website.

The public may also receive federal sector information updates and news items via GovDelivery and Twitter.

The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.

Justice Department Settles Immigration-Related Discrimination Claim Against Georgia Poultry Processing Company (Oct. 2018)

Tuesday, October 9th, 2018

The Justice Department today announced that it has reached a settlement with Mar-Jac Poultry, Inc., a poultry processing company in Gainesville, Georgia. The settlement resolves a long-standing lawsuit filed by the Justice Department alleging that Mar-Jac Poultry violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) by discriminating against work-authorized non-U.S. citizens when verifying their work authorization.

The Department filed its complaint on July 14, 2011, after investigating a charge that a worker filed. The complaint alleged that from at least July 1, 2009 to at least January 27, 2011, Mar-Jac Poultry routinely required work-authorized non-U.S. citizens to present a document issued by the Department of Homeland Security, such as a Permanent Resident Card or Employment Authorization Document, to prove their work authorization, but did not require specific documents from U.S. citizens. On March 3, 2017, the court found that Mar-Jac was liable for a pattern or practice of this type of discrimination against non-U.S. citizens Respondent hired between June 16, 2010 and February 9, 2011, leaving monetary and other remedies for future resolution. All work-authorized individuals, whether U.S. citizens or non-U.S. citizens, have the right to choose which valid documentation to present to prove they are authorized to work. The INA’s antidiscrimination provision prohibits employers from subjecting employees to unnecessary documentary demands based on employees’ citizenship status or national origin.

“Even an employer that hires many non-U.S. citizens can violate the INA if it treats employees differently based on citizenship status or national origin when verifying their identity and work authorization,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore of the Civil Rights Division. “This case demonstrates the Department’s commitment to ensuring that all employers implement the employment eligibility verification process in a non-discriminatory manner.”

Under the settlement agreement, Mar-Jac will pay a civil penalty of $190,000; pay $1020 to a refugee the company fired when he did not produce a DHS-issued document to reverify his work authority; pay up to $23,980 in back pay to compensate other affected employees and applicants; train its employees on the INA’s anti-discrimination provision; and be subject to departmental monitoring for two years.

The Division’s Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER) is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provision of the INA. Among other things, the statute prohibits citizenship status and national origin discrimination in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee; unfair documentary practices; and retaliation and intimidation.

For more information about protections against employment discrimination under immigration laws, call IER’s worker hotline at 1-800-255-7688 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for hearing impaired); call IER’s employer hotline at 1-800-255-8155 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for hearing impaired); sign up for a free webinar; email IER@usdoj.gov; or visit IER’s English and Spanish websites. Subscribe to GovDelivery to receive updates from IER.

Applicants or employees who believe they were subjected to different documentary requirements based on their citizenship, immigration status, or national origin; or discrimination based on their citizenship, immigration status, or national origin in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral, should contact IER’s worker hotline for assistance.

EEOC RELEASES PRELIMINARY FY 2018 SEXUAL HARASSMENT DATA (Oct. 2018)

Monday, October 8th, 2018

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced preliminary FY 2018 sexual harassment data today – highlighting its significant work this past fiscal year to address the pervasive problem of workplace harassment.

What You Should Know: EEOC Leads the Way in Preventing Workplace Harassment recognizes key milestones of the agency to actively enforce the law, to educate and train workers and employers, and to share its expertise on new solutions to reduce harassing conduct in the workplace. Combating all forms of workplace harassment – whether based on sex, race, color, disability, age, national origin, or religion — remains a top priority of the EEOC.

“I am so proud of the EEOC staff who stepped up to the heightened demand of the #MeToo movement to make clear that workplace harassment is not only unlawful, it is simply not acceptable,” said Acting Chair Victoria A. Lipnic. “As the agency with expertise, as the enforcer of the law, and as an educator, the EEOC has continued to lead the way to achieve the goal of reducing the level of harassment and to promote harassment-free workplaces.”

Based on preliminary data, in FY 2018:

• The EEOC filed 66 harassment lawsuits, including 41 that included allegations of sexual harassment. That reflects more than a 50 percent increase in suits challenging sexual harassment over fiscal year 2017.

• In addition, charges filed with the EEOC alleging sexual harassment increased by more than 12 percent from fiscal year 2017.

• Overall, the EEOC recovered nearly $70 million for the victims of sexual harassment through litigation and administrative enforcement in FY 2018, up from $47.5 million in FY 2017.

The EEOC’s innovative training program, “Respectful Workplaces,” which teaches skills for employees and supervisors to promote and contribute to respect in the workplace, was in high demand since it was launched in October 2017. Over 9,000 employees and supervisors in the private, public and federal sector work forces participated in Respectful Workplaces trainings this past fiscal year. An additional 13,000 employees participated in EEOC’s anti-harassment compliance trainings.

“We have been traveling the country, spreading the word about what the EEOC is doing and the resources we have to offer,” said Commissioner Chai R. Feldblum, Co-Chair of the Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace. “We are at a transformative moment in our history and the EEOC will be part of making that history.” Moving forward, the EEOC recognizes that more can and should be done. Acting Chair Lipnic noted further, “the EEOC will continue to be there, striving to make our workplaces productive places where we can all go, do our jobs, and be free from harassment.”

The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov.

OFCCP: Excellence in Disability Inclusion and New Awards Program for Contractors (Oct. 6, 2018)

Saturday, October 6th, 2018

OFCCP and the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) are joining efforts to recognize excellence in contractor compliance practices. The Excellence in Disability Inclusion Award will highlight successful practices and strategies of contractors that have expanded and improved recruitment, hiring, retention, and promotion opportunities for individuals with disabilities.

Studies and surveys show that corporate culture, talent sourcing practices, reasonable accommodation policies and practices, and the degree to which technology and innovation are leveraged within the company influence employers’ success in disability inclusion.

With this new award program, OFCCP and ODEP seek to recognize contractors that are going above and beyond to foster employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.

Where can you learn more? The proposed structure and details of the recognition program are published in today’s Federal Register. You can read the formal notice, supporting statement, and see a draft of the award nomination form and instructions here.

Tell us what you think. You can provide any comments or suggestions you have for the new program via www.regulations.gov. The last day to submit comments on this proposal is December 4, 2018.