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Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)

Federal Contract Compliance Manual (FCCM)

Chapter 6 — Complaint Investigation

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Figures

6-1 AO/FO Letter of Contractor Forwarding Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Employee Complaint

6-2 AO/FO Letter to Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Employee Complainant on Referral for Internal Review

6-3 AO/FO Letter to Contractor Confirming Use of Internal Review Procedure

6-4 AO/FO Letter to Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Employee Complainant Confirming Contractor's Use of Internal Review Procedure

6-5 AO/FO Letter to Contractor Who Will Not Use Internal Review Procedure

6-6 AO/FO Letter to Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Employee Complainant Informing that Contractor Will Not Use Internal Review Procedure

6-7 AO/FO Letter to Contractor Confirming Complaint Resolution During 60-Day Internal Review Period

6-8 AO/FO Letter to Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Employee Complainant Confirming Complaint Resolution During 60-Day Internal Review Period

6-9 AO/FO Letter to Contractor Confirming No Resolution During 60-Day Internal Review Period

6-10 AO/FO Letter to Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Employee Complainant Confirming No Resolution During 60-Day Internal Review Period

6-11 AO/FO Letter to Contractor Forwarding Non-Employee Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Or Executive Order Complaint

6-12 AO/FO Letter Acknowledging Receipt of Executive Order/ Non-Employee Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Complaint

6-13 Authorization for Release of Medical Information

6-14 Letter to Physician

6-15 Confirmation of Onsite Investigation

6-16 Notification - No Violation

6-17 Notification - Violation

Appendices

Appendix A Investigation Guidelines for Special Disabled Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities Complaints

Appendix B DOL Publications on Disabilities/Veterans' Issues

Appendix C Investigative Report

Appendix D Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and Related Conditions as Protected Handicaps Under Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended

INDEX


6A INTRODUCTION

This Chapter outlines the procedures to be used in processing and conducting the investigation of complaints alleging discrimination in employment by Government contractors. It focuses on the responsibilities of the EOS with respect to investigation and resolution of complaints.


6B APPLICABILITY

These procedures apply to complaints alleging employment discrimination in violation of: (1) Executive Order 11246, as amended; (2) Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended; and (3) Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212. The Order and Acts are implemented by regulations published in Chapter 60, Title 41 of the Code of Federal Regulations (41 CFR), specifically: (1) 41 CFR Parts 60-1 through 60-60; (2) 41 CFR Part 60-250; and (3) 41 CFR Part 60-741. Individual complaints alleging employment discrimination in violation of Executive Order 11246, as amended, are generally referred to EEOC pursuant to the EEOC/OFCCP Memorandum of Understanding. (46 FR 7435, January 23, 1981) Referrals to EEOC are generally handled at the Regional Office (RO) level.


6C FILING A COMPLAINT

6C00 INTAKE

The OFCCP ROs are responsible for implementing the procedures, restrictions, and policies applicable to the disposition of all complaints filed under the above (6B) Order and Acts. The OFCCP Administrative Practices Binder (Green binder) contains the full exposition of this process. Complaints which are determined to be within the authority of OFCCP are assigned to an Area Office (AO)/Field Office (FO) for investigation. This Chapter does not cover regional or other administrative matters except as they directly involve the Equal Opportunity Specialist (EOS).

6C01 COMPLAINT FILING

Complaints filed at any OFCCP location other than the appropriate Regional Office (RO) should be sent immediately to the RO which has geographic jurisdiction over the area in which the identified establishment of the contractor is located. The location that receives the complaint will immediately date stamp the complaint and enter the date and time it was received into a log before forwarding it to the regional office. This will be the date used for determining whether the complaint was timely filed.

Generally, every effort should be made to have the complaint complete and sign Form CC-4 (Figure 6-18).


6D AREA/FIELD OFFICE PROCESSING: GENERAL

6D00 CASE FILE

Upon receipt of an assigned complaint, the AO/FO will establish a case file. All documents, correspondence, interview notes, and records of telephone calls pertaining to the complaint should be maintained in this file. Upon the completion of the investigation, the case file should contain sufficient documentation to support either an enforcement recommendation based on a finding of violation or a decision to close the file based on a finding of no violation.

6D01 CORRESPONDENCE

All letters to a contractor concerning a complaint should be addressed to the senior official of the establishment with a copy for the chief executive officer at the corporate address (except when the contractor is a single location establishment).

6D02 COUNSEL OR OTHER REPRESENTATION

A contractor or complainant may designate an attorney or other representative as his/her contact person with OFCCP prior to or during a complaint investigation. Such designation shall be at the initiation of the contractor or complainant.

  1. Written Designation: The designation of a contact person must be in writing by the contractor or complainant to the Area or Field Office Director or Assistant Regional Administrator. This correspondence should provide the name, address and telephone number of the contact person. In addition, the correspondence should clearly describe the extent of the contact person's authority, specifically: (1) if all contacts, including routine contacts to make appointments or to clarify submitted data or other information, should go through the contact person; (2) if the contact person has the authority to negotiate settlements for the contractor or complainant; and (3) if correspondence is to be mailed only to the contact person, or if copies are to be mailed to the contractor or complainant as well.
  2. Duration of Designation: Such designation shall be only for the duration of the complaint investigation, unless otherwise indicated by the contractor or complainant in the written designation.

Revised February 12, 1993

6D03 TIMELY COMPLETION

The AO/FO must complete the investigation within 60 days after receiving the complaint from the RO, unless an extension of this period is granted by the Assistant Regional Administrator (ARA). OFCCP policy on granting extensions is found in Order No. FCCM 83-10/CH 6, formerly 630a5, which is filed in the Administrative Binder behind the "COMPL" tab. Also, this period may be extended for up to 60 days to provide the contractor the opportunity to process an employee complaint pursuant to 41 CFR 60-250.26(b) and/or 60-741.26(b).

6D04 COMPLAINT ADMINISTRATION SYSTEM (CAS)

The CAS is designed to track and monitor the processing of complaints filed with OFCCP. The AO/FO has specific responsibilities for providing information for entry into this automated system. These responsibilities begin with the receipt of the assigned complaint from the RO and end when the complaint file is closed. Specific instructions are found in the CAS Manual.


6E PROVIDING THE CONTRACTOR A COPY OF THE COMPLAINT

6E00 GENERAL

OFCCP regulations (41 CFR 60-250.26(b) and 60-741.26(b)) require that when a complaint is filed under Section 503 or 38 U.S.C. 4212 by an employee and the contractor has an applicable internal review procedure, the complaint shall be referred to the contractor for processing under that procedure. This requirement does not extend to complaints filed under the Executive Order or complaints filed under Section 503 or 38 U.S.C. 4212 by someone other than an employee (e.g., a rejected applicant for employment). However, in the interests of consistency and evenhanded administration of its programs, OFCCP will also provide a copy of the complaint to the contractor even where there is no regulatory requirement to do so.

6E01 REVIEW OF COMPLAINTS BEFORE RELEASE

  1. Copy of Complaint: A full copy of the complaint will normally be provided to the contractor except to the extent it contains the following types of information which may be deleted. (Try to make any deletions so that the remaining text reads as smoothly as possible.)
    • The name and/or other information which would readily permit the identification of a person other than the complainant who might suffer retaliation, be construed as an informer, or suffer embarrassment or other unwarranted invasion of privacy.
    • Obscene, inflammatory, or libelous language.
    • Names and allegations against more than one company. Delete the name and allegations against company #1, from the complaint copy provided to company #2, and vice versa.
    • The identifying characteristics of individuals named or readily identifiable in a third party complaint that they have not signed or authorized.
  2. Summary of Complaint: If the necessary deletions are extensive, a complaint summary may be prepared for forwarding to the contractor. If a summary is used, the EOS, at the initial interview with the complainant, should obtain a redrafted complaint for submittal to the contractor prior to the onsite investigation.

6E02 PROVIDING THE CONTRACTOR A COPY OF SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINTS (INTERNAL REVIEW)

  1. General: All correspondence indicated below is to be sent certified mail, return receipt requested. NOTE: The term employee may include, as used in this section, persons currently on the contractor's payroll and those who have been terminated, but who continue to have grievance or reemployment rights under a collective bargaining agreement or as a matter of company policy.
  2. Internal Review Notice: Upon receiving the assigned complaint from the RO, the AO/FO will send a copy of the complaint to the contractor using the sample letter at Figure 6-1. Also, the complainant will be notified by using the sample letter at Figure 6-2. The AO/FO is responsible for keeping track of the 10 day period in which the contractor has been asked to reply. At the end of 10 days, if the contractor has not replied, the EOS is to telephone the contractor to determine its intentions.
  3. Internal Review to Be Used: If the contractor informs the AO/FO that it will use its internal review procedure, confirm this by using the sample letter at Figure 6-3. Also, notify the complainant by using the sample letter at Figure 6-4. The 60 day internal review period begins from the date the contractor received the first letter (b, above) as evidenced by the return receipt. The AO/FO is responsible for keeping track of the 60 day internal review period.
  4. Internal Review Not Being Used: If the contractor informs the AO/FO that it will not attempt resolution through its own procedures, confirm this by using the sample letter at Figure 6-5. Also, notify the complainant by using the sample letter at Figure 6-6. The AO/FO should schedule the investigation as soon as possible.

  5. URL for Policy Directive #254 - Change in Operating Procedures Regarding Class Complaints and Concurrent Compliance Evaluations
  6. Results of the Internal Review: At the end of the 60 day internal review period, if the AO/FO has not been informed of the results of the internal review, the EOS should contact the contractor and the complainant to determine if there has been a resolution of the complaint satisfactory to the complainant.
  7. Resolution of the Complaint: If the AO/FO is notified that the complaint has been resolved to the satisfaction of the complainant, every effort should be made to obtain written confirmation from the complainant and the contractor. Whether or not written confirmation is obtained, the AO/FO will confirm the notification by using the sample letters at Figures 6-7 and 6-8. The complaint case file may then be closed.
  8. Complaint Not Resolved: If the AO/FO is notified that the internal review failed to reach a resolution satisfactory to the complainant, confirm this by using the sample letters at Figures 6-9 and 6-10. The AO/FO should schedule the investigation as soon as possible.

6E03 PROVIDING THE CONTRACTOR A COPY OF EXECUTIVE ORDER AND OTHER SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 COMPLAINTS

  1. General: This section describes the process of providing the contractor with a copy of the complaint in those circumstances which are not included in 6E02, above. All correspondence indicated below is to be sent certified mail, return receipt requested.
  2. Notice to Contractor: Upon receiving the assigned complaint from the RO, the AO/FO will send a copy of the complaint to the contractor using the sample letter at Figure 6-11. Also, the complainant will be notified by using the sample letter at Figure 6-12. The AO/FO should schedule the investigation as soon as possible.
  3. Resolution of the Complaint: If, as a result of the notice to the contractor, a resolution is achieved which is satisfactory to the complainant, follow the procedures in 6E02(f), above, with whatever modifications individual circumstances may dictate.

  4. Hyperlink to Policy Directive #256 - Standard Case File Format for Complaint Investigations

6F THE INVESTIGATION

6F00 DISCRIMINATION

A complaint is merely an allegation of discrimination. The purpose of investigating an allegation of discrimination is to determine if in fact discrimination did occur. Unfairness, per se, is not equivalent to discrimination. See Chapter 7 for a detailed discussion of employment discrimination. The EOS must exercise objectivity, reasoned thoughtfulness, and common sense in collecting and analyzing all available facts pertinent to each investigation. No two sets of fact situations are the same; each investigation must be conducted in an atmosphere of open mindedness and fairness to both parties.

  1. Relationship to Compliance Reviews: Complaint investigations may be done with or without a compliance review except that full compliance reviews should be conducted whenever the complaint appears to involve systemic or class type discrimination and the contractor's establishment has not been reviewed in the two years prior to the filing of the complaint.
  2. Investigative Priority: In scheduling complaints for investigation, the AO/FO should take immediate action on any complaint alleging retaliation or irreparable injury for filing a complaint with OFCCP, or for assisting in an OFCCP compliance review, complaint investigation, or enforcement action. (See 41 CFR 60-1.32, 60-250.51, and 60-741.51). The AO/FO should also take immediate action on complaints from job applicants.

6F01 THE INVESTIGATIVE PLAN

  1. Purpose of Plan: Every complaint investigation should have a plan. The investigative plan serves as a checklist or road map for the conduct of the investigation. While every step along the way may not be identified, the plan should contain the major actions to be taken. Because each complaint is based on a unique set of factual circumstances, so too must the plan be tailored to the particular circumstances described in the complaint. It should be recognized that the plan is subject to modification based on new or revised information. Experience in some OFCCP offices has shown that a more useful and comprehensive plan results when the assigned EOS has discussed the complaint with his/her supervisor or with other EOSs in a structured meeting.
  2. Content: It is not intended here to specify every item contained in a plan. However, most investigations will encompass and most plans should contain or provide for:
    • A complete list of the allegations in the complaint;
    • Interviewing the complainant;
    • Obtaining the necessary Privacy Act and medical releases;
    • A list of management officials (by name or position) to be interviewed;
    • A list of nonmanagement individuals (by name or position) and other complainant witnesses to be interviewed;
    • A list of the kinds of company records to be reviewed;
    • Onsite facility visit;
    • The possible need for a third party medical opinion in a Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 complaint;
    • The possible need for contact with the local VETS office in a 38 U.S.C. 4212 complaint;
    • Questions or information needed based on sections 6F02, 6F03, or, 6F04 below, as appropriate.

6F02 EXECUTIVE ORDER COMPLAINT INVESTIGATIONS

Complaints filed under Executive Order 11246, as amended, are investigated using the same principles and methods as are used in conducting the onsite aspects of a supply and service compliance review. Therefore, the EOS should determine, from a review of the complaint, what specific personnel activity gave rise to the complaint; and then refer to Chapters 3 and 7 of this Manual for guidance on investigative techniques and theories of employment discrimination to use in developing the investigative plan and conducting the investigation.

6F03 SECTION 503 COMPLAINT INVESTIGATIONS

  1. Special Investigative Guidelines: Appendix A contains a set of investigation guidelines to assist EOSs in investigating complaints brought by individuals with disabilities. These guidelines discuss in detail the elements of a 503/4212 complaint filed by an individual with a disability; the complainant's qualifications to perform the job; the complainant's qualifications to perform the job if reasonably accommodated; and whether the complainant was reasonably accommodated. These should be used, as appropriate, in developing the investigative plan and conducting the investigation. Also, at Appendix B, see the list of publications on Disabled/Veterans' issues.
  2. Obtaining Medical Documentation: In investigating complaints under Section 503, often it will be necessary to obtain medical records pertaining to the complainant. For example, medical records may be needed to establish disabled status, or to determine what accommodation might be appropriate. Physicians and medical treatment facilities usually will require a medical release before providing medical information to OFCCP. The complaint form, CC-4, contains a general medical release. However, if the complainant has altered the CC-4 medical release, if the physician or medical facility refuses to honor the signed CC-4 as a release, or if the complaint was not filed on a CC-4, then the EOS should obtain the complainant's signature on a medical release (Figure 6-13).
  3. Third Party Medical Opinion: Often there may be a difference of opinion between the complainant's medical practitioner and the contractor's medical representative. Assistance in resolving such differences of opinion can be obtained from the regional office of the Office of Workers' Compensation District Medical Director/Advisor. This office maintains a list of consultants who are experts in medical/occupational matters. When such consultants are used, the invoice for the services should be sent to the AO/FO which will submit it, with a brief explanatory memorandum indicating that the services were performed, to the OFCCP NO, Attn: Management Support Staff.
    1. Medical Examination: When there is a difference of opinion regarding the complainant's medical condition, a third-party medical opinion should be obtained. In this instance, no previously obtained medical documentation should be provided to the practitioner; this will help to ensure that the new opinion is not swayed by the opinion of others.
    2. Ability to Perform the Job: When there is a difference of opinion regarding the complainant's ability to perform the job, with or without accommodation, a third-party opinion should be obtained. Generally, a vocational or occupational specialist will be most helpful in this situation. In this instance, the EOS should provide the consultant with documentation regarding the disabling condition. In addition, the consultant should be provided a thorough description of the work site and the job duties involved; this information should not be based solely on the contractor's official documents or oral statements, but should include what the EOS has personally observed and determined during the onsite investigation (6F07 below). Figure 6-14 provides a sample letter for arranging the appointment for the complainant.

6F04 38 U.S.C. 4212 COMPLAINT INVESTIGATIONS

  1. General: Complaints filed under 38 U.S.C. 4212 may be from special disabled veterans (see 41 CFR 60-250.2, "Disabled veteran") or veterans of the Vietnam era (see 41 CFR 60-250.2, "Veteran of the Vietnam era"). In addition, an individual filing as a special disabled veteran must be "qualified," that is, capable of performing a particular job, with reasonable accommodation to his or her disability (41 CFR 60-250.2, "Qualified disabled veteran"). The definition of special disabled veteran has been amended by Pub. L. 96-466 (1980); Section 309 (1) and (2) of Pub. L. 97-306 (1982) and Pub. L. 98-223 (1984) since publication of the regulations. In reviewing a complaint filed under 38 U.S.C. 4212 and in discussing it with the complainant, the EOS should clearly distinguish and determine whether the complainant believes the alleged discriminatory treatment was based on his or her status as a Vietnam era veteran, or based on a disabling condition attributable to his or her ??veteran status (peace or war). This distinction is important, for it will determine the nature of the investigation.
  2. Qualified Special Disabled Veteran: In investigating this type of complaint, the EOS should follow the procedures for a Section 503 complaint discussed at 6F03, above.
  3. Vietnam Era Veteran: In investigating this type of complaint, the EOS should focus on the preemployment or personnel practices, as appropriate, which might indicate that the complainant's veteran status was taken into consideration in a manner which resulted in discriminatory treatment. In this instance, it is the complainant's veteran status, per se, which must be carefully related to the personnel action at issue.
  4. State Employment Service: State employment services have special responsibilities regarding qualified special disabled veterans and veterans of the Vietnam era (41 CFR 60-250.33). The local offices usually have a representative who deals primarily with veterans' matters. The EOS should contact the local employment service veterans' representative for any pertinent information regarding both the complainant and the contractor.
  5. DOL Veterans Employment and Training Services (VETS): Each DOL RO has a VETS office. The EOS should contact that office, in accordance with regional procedures, to obtain any information which may be pertinent to the complaint. For example, the complainant may have contacted the VETS office prior to filing the complaint; as a consequence, the VETS office may have useful information based on its contact with the complainant and possibly the contractor as well.

6F05 INITIAL INTERVIEW WITH THE COMPLAINANT

  1. General: The information provided on the complaint form is generally insufficient for purposes of conducting a proper investigation. Before going onsite, the EOS should contact the complainant to establish a mutually agreeable time and place to conduct an interview. The interview should be conducted in person unless compelling circumstances preclude doing so. In these instances the interview can be conducted by telephone. If the complainant resides outside the area covered by the AO/FO, and the EOS and his or her supervisor believe that a face-to-face interview is necessary, the appropriate OFCCP RO should be contacted to conduct the interview. All necessary and appropriate information should be provided to the RO conducting the interview. When no personal interview takes place at anytime during the investigation, this fact should be recorded with the reason for it.
  2. The Interview: The interview plan prepared by the EOS should contain specific questions tailored to obtain the necessary information to support or refute the complainant's allegations. Examples of the types of information to be considered are:
    • Name(s) of contractor officials who allegedly discriminated;
    • Name(s) of employee(s) who may have witnessed the alleged act(s);
    • Detailed circumstances surrounding the act(s);
    • Description of the contractor's personnel policies and practices related to the employment action at issue;
    • The explanation given by the contractor to the complainant for the action;
    • Copies of personnel policies, job advertisements, job descriptions, etc.

    Additional interview elements and guidance for Executive Order complaints may be found in Chapters 3 and 7; and for complaints from individuals with disabilities, in Appendix A.

6F06 NOTIFYING THE CONTRACTOR OF THE ONSITE INVESTIGATION

When the investigative plan has been completed, and modified based on any additional information obtained during the initial interview with the complainant, arrangements should be made for the onsite visit. The EOS should telephone the contractor and speak with the individual who will represent the contractor during the onsite visit. The EOS should advise the representative that: (1) there should be an entrance conference with the facility's senior officer (or designee) to outline the investigative process, what will be done onsite, and estimate how many days the visit will take; (2) certain records should be available for review (be as specific as possible); and (3) named (or use position title) management employees should be available for interviewing. Establish a mutually agreeable date for beginning the visit. A letter confirming the onsite visit must be sent (Figure 6-15). The letter must include notification that I-9 forms will be inspected, therefore it must be sent so as to reach the contractor at least three days prior to the visit. (See Chapter 3.)

6F07 ONSITE INVESTIGATION

  1. General: The onsite investigation must be conducted in a manner which conveys the objectivity and fact finding intent of the EOS. The focus of the EOS's activity must be on the complainant's allegations and the personnel actions which gave rise to them. The records being reviewed and the interviews being conducted should provide information clearly related to the issues raised in the complaint. For example, an Executive Order complaint alleging discrimination against Blacks will require an approach generally analogous to that used in a supply and service compliance review (see Chapters 3 and 7), while a complaint alleging disability discrimination will require an approach which focuses on the physical and/ or mental condition and ability of the complainant as they relate to the job in question and the contractor's obligation to provide reasonable accommodation.
  2. Entrance Conference: The entrance conference with the facility's senior official/designee sets the stage for the entire visit. Being well organized and nonjudgmental will contribute to the impression that the EOS is a fact finder and not a prosecutor. The EOS should discuss at least: (1) the investigative process; (2) what will be done onsite; (3) an estimate of the length of the visit; (4) the need to inspect the I-9 forms; and (5) a mutually agreeable day and time for an exit conference. Inasmuch as the contractor was previously provided a copy of the complaint and informed of the Order/Act under which it was filed, there is no need to repeat that information. However, the EOS should be prepared to respond to any questions regarding them. Experience has shown that most senior officials will leave to their representative the details of arranging interviews and record reviews. However, the EOS should be prepared to discuss these matters if called upon to do so by the official.
  3. Facility Tour: A tour of the contractor's establishment should be conducted during the early stages of the onsite investigation. In the instance of a complaint of an individual with a physical disability, the EOS should note (and possibly diagram) the physical setting of the job in question and the activities of employees performing similar duties in that setting. In the instance of an Executive Order complaint brought, for example, by a woman, the EOS should note the presence or absence of women in the work area or job positions at issue. There may be situations where a tour might be unnecessary, for example, when the alleged discriminatory act involves the contractor's medical leave practices as they apply to pregnancy. As indicated by these examples, the EOS is viewing specific work areas for the specific purpose of gaining knowledge about the job at issue. If it is not overly intrusive, the EOS may speak briefly and informally with employees at their work stations to get an understanding of the job process if this information is pertinent to the investigation.
  4. Interviewing:
    1. General: This section, "Interviewing," is not intended to teach the EOS how to interview witnesses. Rather, it is intended to reflect current OFCCP policies regarding the mechanics of the process. Also, because interviewing is the most personal process undertaken in the investigation, it is essential that the EOS maintain a high degree of objectivity.
    2. Informing the Witness: At the outset of an interview, each individual should be told that he/she will be shown and asked to sign a statement containing their answers to the questions asked. The interviewee's home address and telephone number should be requested in case it becomes necessary to clarify any matters at a later date. The EOS should enter the following phrase above the space where the interviewee will sign, "I have read the above and it is true." In addition, the EOS should clearly inform the individual that it is against the law for the contractor to take any retaliatory action or to intimidate them for participating in the interview.
    3. Interview Notes: The EOS should start with a list of questions developed prior to the onsite. This list, with the interviewee's responses noted, comprise the "interview notes." Follow-up questions and answers should be added to the notes as the interview progresses. At the end of the interview, the individual's name should be printed or typed on the list and he or she should sign it. As stated above, the EOS should also attempt to obtain the individual's address and telephone number. If the interviewee refuses to sign the notes, the EOS should note the refusal.
    4. Management and Supervisory Officials/Witnesses: "Management" or "supervisory" employees refers to bona fide executive employees who are exempt from the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act pursuant to 29 U.S.C. 213(a)(1) and 29 CFR 541.1. When these employees are interviewed, they may be speaking not only for themselves, but also for the contractor, for example, a management employee when he/she is describing personnel policies of the contractor that he or she is responsible for enforcing. On the other hand, a management employee who is filing a complaint about his or her own employment is not speaking on behalf of the contractor.
    5. Presence of Management Employees: Contractor representatives, including attorneys, may be present at interviews of management and supervisory employees when such employees are being interviewed in their official capacity. In conducting such interviews in the presence of a contractor representative, the EOS should explain that the presence of the representative means that the contractor acknowledges that the interviewee speaks on its behalf and that his or her statements regarding policies and actions may fairly be treated as those of the contractor. The fact that this explanation was made should be noted in the EOS's interview notes.
    6. Other Employees/Witnesses: It is the policy of OFCCP to interview privately contractor employees who are not management or supervisory employees. This helps to ensure that such employees are free from any possible intimidation or retaliation. Should a contractor object to the EOS's attempt to privately interview employees on its premises, the EOS should undertake to conduct the interview away from the contractor's facility.
  5. Documentary Evidence and Records:
    1. Policies and Practices: The EOS should obtain copies of all documents which explain any policy or practice that bears on the allegations in the complaint. For example, when job requirements are not written or the written material is not current, the EOS should request that the contractor provide a written statement of facts or conditions currently in effect.
    2. Relevance: The EOS should only obtain copies of written material which is relevant to the complaint. For example, a complaint which alleges discriminatory discharge, which the contractor states was due to poor performance, will require copies of performance evaluations and written notices from the complainant's supervisor, but not a copy of the complete personnel file.
    3. Medical Releases: In the instance of a complaint involving disability discrimination in which it is alleged that the contractor's medical officer played a role in the action at issue, the EOS should obtain a medical release from the complainant before going onsite. This will make it easier to obtain the contractor's medical records of the complainant.
  6. Exit Conference: Upon completion of the onsite investigation, the EOS should conduct an exit conference with the facility's senior official/designee (preferably the same person who was at the entrance conference). At this meeting, the EOS should present a summary of any violations and document rebuttal arguments made by the contractor. The EOS should emphasize that the findings are preliminary and that no final conclusions will be drawn until the analysis of all data collected is complete, and each allegation is either affirmed or refuted. At his or her own discretion, the EOS may remind the contractor that it still has the opportunity to attempt to resolve the complaint to the satisfaction of the complainant. The contractor should be informed of the approximate length of time it will take to complete the offsite analysis, prepare the investigative report, and issue the Notification of Results of Investigation.

6G INVESTIGATIVE REPORT

A written investigative report is required in all instances in which an onsite investigation is conducted. Appendix C contains the format for this report. In writing this report, the EOS should avoid expressing personal opinions and should avoid including extraneous matters not related to the issues of the complaint. The EOS should make every effort to present factual information and the basis for it.


6H NOTIFICATION OF RESULTS OF INVESTIGATION (NRI)

6H00 WHEN USED

A NRI is prepared if the complaint is still unresolved by the time the investigative report is completed. If, during the interval of time between the exit conference (6F07(f)) and the onset of the preparation of the NRI, the AO/FO is informed of a resolution of the complaint satisfactory to the complainant, the NRI is not to be prepared.

6H01 SIGNATURE AND PROCEDURES

The NRI should be prepared for the signature of the ARA or his or her designee. After being signed, the original NRI is to remain in the case file; copies of the NRI are to be issued to the complainant and the contractor with a letter of transmittal, sent certified mail, return receipt requested. Formats for the two types of NRIs (no violation/violation) are included in Figures 6-16 and 6-17.

6H02 NOTICE TO LABOR UNION (VIOLATION)

Where remedy for a finding of violation would require a change in or otherwise affect a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between the contractor and a union or require the award of retro-active seniority where seniority is governed by a CBA, the union will be notified of the particular violation, and will be invited to participate in its conciliation (see Sections 8C, 7F06 and 7F06A). Where the union declines to participate or to sign the CA, that fact will be noted in paragraph 1 of the CA (see Section 8F01(b)(2) and (e)) and the Nonadmissions Clause will be omitted.


6I CONCILIATION OF THE COMPLAINT (VIOLATION)

6I00 SETTLEMENT BEFORE COMPLETION OF INVESTIGATION

The EOS should be prepared to discuss settlement at any stage of the investigation as long as there is sufficient evidence to ensure that there is a violation, and the settlement will provide a just resolution of the violations. Before engaging in conciliation discussions, the EOS should advise the contractor that: (1) there is no prejudice to the position of the contractor for participating in conciliation sessions prior to completion of the investigation, or for not participating in the discussions; and (2) the Government's participation in conciliation sessions is not to be construed as a waiver of the Government's right to proceed to a formal Notification of Results of Investigation if the conciliation sessions are unsuccessful. Any agreement reached is subject to review and approval by the ARA or his or her designee.

Revised 5-25-90

6I01 SETTLEMENT AFTER COMPLETION OF INVESTIGATION

The NRI (violation) invites the contractor to join with the Department of Labor in resolving the complaint through conciliation by informal means. The EOS is to telephone the contractor within 10 days of its receipt of the NRI to arrange the conciliation meeting.

  1. Conciliation Meeting: The conciliation meeting is the method by which the Government attempts to obtain voluntary compliance with the Order/Acts, and therefore participation is limited to Government and contractor officials. Thus, the complainant is not a party to the meeting. However, the EOS should keep the complainant informed of the progress of the meeting(s), in order to gather further input and to discuss proposed settlements.
  2. Reasonable Settlement: If the AO/FO believes it has arrived at a reasonable settlement, which the complainant accepts, the contractor will acknowledge its responsibility to fulfill the settlement by signing a conciliation agreement. ARAs are hereby granted authority to modify paragraphs 1 through 7 of the General Provisions of the conciliation agreement, as appropriate, to fit the settlement of the complaint. As provided elsewhere, the mandatory enforcement clause (paragraph 8) may not be modified in any way without the express prior approval of the OFCCP Director. The Specific Provisions, Part II, and Reporting, Part III, would be written to reflect proper settlement and follow-up on the complaint. If the complainant will not accept what the AO/FO considers to be a reasonable settlement, the AO/FO may cease its efforts on behalf of the complainant, but must nevertheless obtain from the contractor correction of any policies or practices (e.g., maternity leave policy) which caused the discrimination. The steps in accomplishing this are as follows: (1) the AO/FO should request that the contractor submit in writing, to the AO/FO, a full statement of its agreed upon settlement to be maintained in the case file; (2) the AO/FO is to notify the complainant, in writing, of the full details of the settlement and request a written reply accepting or rejecting the settlement; (3) if the AO/FO considers the offered settlement to be reasonable, and the complainant persists in refusing to accept it, the AO/FO should cease its efforts on behalf of the complainant and close the case file, and should obtain from the contractor a CA resolving all discriminatory policies and practices.

6J ENFORCEMENT

If any matter raised in the NRI violation cannot be resolved through conciliation with the contractor, it should be processed for enforcement. Refer to Chapter 8.


Figure 6-1: AO/FO LETTER TO CONTRACTOR FORWARDING SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINT

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Dear (name of contractor):

We wish to notify you that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has received a complaint (copy enclosed) filed under the provisions of (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended)(the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212).

This office has been assigned this complaint for investigation under the Act and OFCCP's regulations (41 CFR Part 60-741/60-250, copy enclosed), which require that Federal contractors and subcontractors with a contract (in excess of $10,000 or more) take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment (qualified individuals with disabilities)(qualified special disabled and Vietnam Era veterans).

As required by our regulations, please retain full and accurate records relevant to this complaint and ensure that there is no retaliation against the complainant (41 CFR 60-741.51 and .52/60-250.51 and .52). Also, our regulations require that the complaint and all actions taken with regard to it shall be kept confidential (41 CFR 60-741.26/60-250.26).

You are offered the opportunity by our regulations to attempt to resolve this complaint under an internal review procedure [41 CFR 60-741.26(b)/60-250.26(b)]. If you have such a procedure and wish to use it, please immediately notify us in writing and we will defer scheduling an investigation for 60 days.

If you are successful in internally resolving the complaint to the satisfaction of the complainant, we will need verification from the complainant. However, OFCCP reserves the option to conduct its own investigation if, in its judgment, the circumstances warrant. If you do not intend to attempt to resolve this complaint internally, please notify us of this within 10 days. In this instance, we will schedule the complaint for investigation. During an investigation we may examine your current Affirmative Action Program required under 41 CFR 60-741.5/60-250.5.

This letter is neither a prejudgment of the issues nor an indication that your company has violated any law, but is rather an effort to resolve this matter as expeditiously as possible.

Please contact (AOD/FOD/EOS name) at (telephone #) if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD

Enclosures: 1. Complaint of (name) (CAS #)

2. Regulations


Figure 6-2: AO/FO LETTER TO SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINANT ON REFERRAL FOR INTERNAL REVIEW

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint against (name of company) (CAS #)

Dear (name of complainant):

This is to acknowledge our receipt of your complaint against the above contractor. Your complaint has been assigned to this office for investigation.

Before scheduling an investigation, our regulations require that the contractor be given 60 days to attempt to resolve your complaint through its internal review procedures. The purpose of this procedure is to permit the contractor to examine thoroughly the issues raised by your complaint, and then try to reach a resolution that is satisfactory to you.

The contractor has been notified that it has the opportunity to attempt to resolve your complaint and has been asked to inform us within 10 days whether it will make this effort. We will inform you of the contractor's response.

We have also advised the contractor that our regulations require that all relevant records be retained, that there is to be no retaliation against you, and that this matter is to be treated as confidential.

Please keep us advised of any change in your address or telephone number. If you have any questions, you may contact (AOD/FOD/EOS name) at (telephone #).

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-3: AO/FO LETTER TO CONTRACTOR CONFIRMING USE OF INTERNAL REVIEW PROCEDURE

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint of (name) (CAS #)

Dear (name of contractor):

Thank you for your (letter) (telephone call) of (date) in which you informed us that you will use your internal review procedure in an attempt to resolve the above complaint. We will defer scheduling an investigation of the complaint for 60 days from the date you received our letter of (date of Figure 6-1 letter).

Please keep us advised of the progress of your internal review. We have advised the complainant that you will attempt to resolve the complaint through your internal review procedure.

By the end of the 60 day period, please provide us with a written summary of the results of the review.

We appreciate your cooperation in attempting to resolve this complaint expeditiously.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-4: AO/FO LETTER TO SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINANT CONFIRMING CONTRACTOR'S USE OF INTERNAL REVIEW PROCEDURE

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint against (name of company) (CAS #)

Dear (name of complainant):

This is to inform you that the above company will use its internal review procedure to attempt a resolution of your complaint. We have advised the company that we are informing you of this procedure. Should the company contact you, we urge your cooperation in this matter.

As we stated in our letter to you of (date of Figure 6-2 letter) the contractor has 60 days to attempt to resolve your complaint. We have asked the contractor to provide us a written report of its efforts by the end of the 60 day period. If, before the end of this period, a resolution is reached satisfactory to you, please let us know immediately, preferably in writing.

If, however, a resolution satisfactory to you has not been reached by the end of the 60 day period, we will schedule your complaint for investigation.

If you have any questions please contact (name) at (telephone #).

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-5: AO/FO LETTER TO CONTRACTOR WHO WILL NOT USE INTERNAL REVIEW PROCEDURE

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint of (name) (CAS #)

Dear (name of contractor):

This confirms (your letter) (or telephone conversation) of (date) in which you stated that you will not use an internal review procedure to attempt resolution of the above complaint. We will, therefore, schedule this complaint for investigation. An Equal Opportunity Specialist will contact you to arrange an appointment to see you.

If you wish to submit a statement of position or evidence pertaining to the complaint, such material will be included in the case file and will be considered when the complaint is investigated.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-6: AO/FO LETTER TO SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINANT INFORMING THAT CONTRACTOR WILL NOT USE INTERNAL REVIEW PROCEDURE

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint against (name of company) (CAS #)

Dear (name of complainant):

This is to inform you that the above company has informed us that it does not wish to use an internal review procedure to attempt resolution of your complaint. We will, therefore, schedule your complaint for investigation. An Equal Opportunity Specialist will be in touch with you to arrange an appointment to discuss the complaint.

Please be sure to keep us advised of any change in your address or telephone number.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-7: AO/FO LETTER TO CONTRACTOR CONFIRMING COMPLAINT RESOLUTION DURING 60-DAY INTERNAL REVIEW PERIOD

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint of (name) (CAS #)

Dear (name of contractor):

This confirms (your letter) (our telephone conversation) of (date) in which you stated that the above complaint has been resolved to the satisfaction of the complainant. We have been in contact with the complainant who has stated there has been a satisfactory resolution of the complaint.

We appreciate your efforts in resolving this matter.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-8: AO/FO LETTER TO SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINANT CONFIRMING COMPLAINT RESOLUTION DURING 60-DAY INTERNAL REVIEW PERIOD

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint against (name of company) (CAS #)

Dear (name of complainant):

This is to confirm (your letter) (our telephone conversation) of (date) in which you stated that your complaint against the above company has been resolved to your satisfaction.

If you are satisfied with the resolution of your complaint, please sign on the line indicated below and return this letter to us in the enclosed stamped envelope.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD

There has been a satisfactory resolution to my complaint filed against (name of contractor).

Signature _____________________

Date _____________________


Figure 6-9: AO/FO LETTER TO CONTRACTOR CONFIRMING NO RESOLUTION DURING 60-DAY INTERNAL REVIEW PERIOD

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint of (name) (CAS #)

Dear (name of contractor):

This confirms (your letter) (our telephone conversation) of (date) in which you stated that your efforts to resolve this com-plaint to the satisfaction of the above complainant have been un-successful. We will, therefore, schedule this complaint for investigation. An Equal Opportunity Specialist will contact you to arrange an appointment to begin the investigation.

We wish to remind you that during the investigation we may examine your current Affirmative Action Program required under 41 CFR 60-741.5/60-250.5.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-10: AO/FO LETTER TO SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 EMPLOYEE COMPLAINANT CONFIRMING NO RESOLUTION DURING 60-DAY INTERNAL REVIEW PERIOD

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint against (name of company) (CAS #)

Dear (name of complainant):

This is to inform you that the above company has informed us that they have been unable to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction through its internal review procedure. We will, therefore, schedule your complaint for investigation. An Equal Opportunity Specialist will be in touch with you to arrange an appointment to discuss your complaint.

Please be sure to keep us advised of any change in your address or telephone number.

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-11: AO/FO LETTER TO CONTRACTOR FORWARDING NON-EMPLOYEE SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 OR EXECUTIVE ORDER COMPLAINT

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Dear (name of contractor):

We wish to notify you that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has received a complaint (copy enclosed) filed under the provisions of (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212) (Executive Order 11246, as amended).

This office has been assigned this complaint for investigation under the (Act)(Order) and OFCCP's implementing regulations 41 CFR Part (60-741) (60-250)(60-1 through 60-60) (copy enclosed), which require that Federal contractors and subcontractors having (a contract in excess of $10,000) (a contract of $10,000 or more) (contracts whose total value in any twelve month period is more than $10,000) [take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment (qualified individuals with disabilities)(qualified special disabled and Vietnam Era veterans)] [not discriminate and take affirmative action to ensure equal employment opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, sex, or national origin].

As required by our regulations, please retain full accurate records relevant to this complaint and ensure that there is no retaliation against the complainant [41 CFR (60-741.51 and .52) (60-250.51 and .52) (60-1.32 and 1.43)]. Also, our regulations require that the complaint and all actions taken with regard to it shall be kept confidential [41 CFR (60-741.26) (60-250.26)].

This letter is neither a prejudgment of the issues nor an implication that your firm has violated any law, but is rather a notice of complaint filing and a notice to retain information that will later permit an expeditious investigation and resolution of this matter.

You may wish to review and attempt to resolve this complaint internally, and if you are successful in resolving it to the satisfaction of the complainant, we will need verification from the complainant. However, OFCCP reserves the option to conduct its own investigation if, in its judgment, the circumstances warrant.

If you do not wish to make such an attempt or are unsuccessful in doing so, you may wish to send us a statement of position or

evidence concerning the complaint. Any such material submitted would be included in the case file, and would be considered when the complaint is investigated. Please note that during such an investigation, we may need to examine your current Affirmative Action Program required under 41 CFR (60-741.5) (60-250.5)

(Part 60-2).

If you have any questions, you may contact (AOD/FOD/EOS NAME) at (telephone #).

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD

Enclosure: 1. Complaint of (name of complainant) (CAS #)

2. Regulations


Figure 6-12: AO/FO LETTER ACKNOWLEDGING RECEIPT OF EXECUTIVE ORDER/NON-EMPLOYEE SECTION 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 COMPLAINT

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint against (name of company) (CAS #)

Dear (name of complainant):

This is to acknowledge our receipt of your complaint against the above contractor. Your complaint has been assigned to this office for investigation.

We have notified the contractor of your complaint, provided it a copy, and suggested that it might wish to attempt to resolve the complaint. We have also informed the contractor that our regulations require that all relevant records be retained, that there is to be no retaliation against you, and that this matter is to be treated as confidential.

If the contractor and you are able to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction, please let us know immediately, preferably in writing. In the meanwhile, we will schedule your complaint for investigation.

Please be sure to keep us advised of any change in your address or telephone number. If you have any questions, you may contact (AOD/FOD/EOS name) at (telephone #).

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD


Figure 6-13: AUTHORIZATION FOR RELEASE OF MEDICAL INFORMATION

Re: Complaint against (name of contractor)

OFCCP CAS #

I hereby authorize the release to the United States Department of Labor, Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) of any medical information needed by OFCCP in its investigation of the complaint of discrimination which I filed on (date) against the above-named contractor.

PRINTED/TYPED NAME OF PATIENT

SIGNATURE OF PATIENT

DATE


Figure 6-14: LETTER TO PHYSICIAN

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: (name of complainant)

Dear Dr. (name of physician):

Pursuant to our telephone conversation, I would like to confirm the appointment of (name of complainant) on (date) at (time).

The purpose of the examination is to determine whether (name of complainant) is capable of performing the job of (title of job). The attachment to this letter lists the physical and mental requirements of the job and a general description of the work environment. We are particularly interested in your opinion whether (name of complainant) is presently able to perform the job, given his/her present condition. Also, if there is a risk of injury to him/her, how severe is the potential injury, what is the likelihood that it will occur and when will it arise.

(Name of complainant) has informed us that he/she has a history of /disability of .

Please submit to this office a report of your findings and a bill for your services. If you are called upon to give testimony reregarding your findings, you will be compensated for any additional time required by your participation.

Should you have any questions, please call (EOS) at (telephone #).

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD

Attachment, as stated

cc: Complainant


Figure 6-15: CONFIRMATION OF ONSITE INVESTIGATION

Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested

Re: Complaint of (complainant's name) (CAS #)

Dear (name of contractor):

This letter confirms the telephone call of (date) between Equal Opportunity Specialist (name) and (name of contractor representative) scheduling the investigation of the above complaint filed under (Executive Order 11246, as amended) (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212), to begin (date) at (time). In the telephone call, Mr./Ms. (EOS name) requested that certain records and individuals be available during the visit. These are listed on the attachment to this letter.

During the investigation, we also will inspect the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) as required by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986.

If you have any questions, please contact (EOS name) at (telephone #).

Sincerely,

AOD/FOD

Attachment, as stated


Figure 6-16: NOTIFICATION - NO VIOLATION

Complainant's Name COMPLAINANT

Street

City, State, Zip

Company Name CONTRACTOR

Street

City, State, Zip

NOTIFICATION OF RESULTS OF INVESTIGATION

On (date) the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs,

U. S. Department of Labor conducted an investigation on the allegation(s) of (type) discrimination made in the complaint of (name of complainant) filed on (date). Our investigation has resulted in the following findings:

  1. The (name of contractor) is a nonexempt government contractor subject to the requirements of (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended) (Executive Order 11246, as amended).
  2. (Name of complainant) is (an individual with a disability) (a special disabled veteran/veteran of the Vietnam era) within the meaning of (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212) and the regulations at 41 CFR Part (60-741) (60-250).*

* If Executive Order, substitute: (name of complainant) is a (minority) (woman) covered by Executive Order 11246, as amended, and the regulations at 41 CFR Chapter 60.

  1. The complainant alleges the contractor violated its obligations under the nondiscrimination and affirmative action provisions of its Federal contracts by (terminating, not promoting, etc.).
  2. The contractor's position is that the complainant was (terminated, not hired, etc.) because .
  3. Our investigation indicates that the contractor (describe contractor's actions).
  4. Based on the findings of this investigation, there was insufficient evidence to conclude that the contractor has violated its obligations under the nondiscrimination and affirmative action provisions of (Section 503) (38 U.S.C. 4212) (the Executive Order). Therefore, the Department's processing of this complaint is concluded.

As set forth in 41 CFR (60-741.26(g)) (60-250.26(g)) (601.24(c)), the Director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs may, for reasonable cause, reconsider or order the reconsideration of this determination. A request for reconsideration based on reasonable cause should be addressed, within 30 days of receipt of this notification, to the Director, OFCCP, U. S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, N. W., Washington, D. C. 202l0.

Such a request should be accompanied by affidavits, signed testimony of supervisory or co-workers, or other written documentation which would substantially alter our findings in this case.

On behalf of the United States Department of Labor

ARA (or designee) (Date)

Region


Figure 6-17: NOTIFICATION - VIOLATION

Complainant's Name COMPLAINANT

Street

City, State, Zip

Company Name CONTRACTOR

Street

City, State, Zip

NOTIFICATION OF RESULTS OF INVESTIGATION

On (date) the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs,

U. S. Department of Labor conducted an investigation of the allegation(s) of (type) discrimination made in the complaint of (name of complainant) filed on (date). Our investigation has resulted in the following findings:

  1. The (name of contractor) is a nonexempt government contractor subject to the requirements of (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended) (Executive Order 11246, as amended).
  2. (Name of complainant) is (an individual with a disability) (a special disabled veteran/veteran of the Vietnam era) within the meaning of (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212) and the regulations at 41 CFR Part (60-741) (60-150).*

* If Executive Order, substitute: (Name of complainant) is a (minority) (woman) covered by Executive Order 11246, as amended, and the regulations at 41 CFR Chapter 60.

  1. The complainant alleges the contractor violated its obligations under the nondiscrimination and affirmative action provisions of its Federal contracts by (terminating, not promoting, etc.).
  2. The contractor's position is that the complainant was (terminated, not hired, etc.) because .
  3. Our investigation indicates that the complainant has (or the contractor regards the complainant as having) (describe disability/veteran status and the situation or refer to protected group status.
  4. Our investigation indicates that the contractor (describe contractor's actions).
  5. The action described in Paragraph 6 violated the contractor's obligations under the regulations as follows: (list sections violated and describe violation).

In accordance with the regulations implementing (Section 503) (38 U.S.C. 4212) (Executive Order 11246), 41 CFR [(60-741.26(g)(2)] [60-250.26(g)(2)] [60-1.24(c)(2)], the Department now invites (name of contractor) to join with it to resolve this matter through conciliation by informal means. An Equal Opportunity Specialist from this office will be in contact with (name of contractor) by (date) to begin the conciliation process.

On behalf of the United States Department of Labor

ARA (or Designee) (Date)

Region


Appendix A: INVESTIGATION GUIDELINES FOR SPECIAL DISABLED VETERANS AND INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES COMPLAINTS

The elements of a Section 503/4212 case - Basic to every case under Section 503/4212 are a number of important issues. If a determination of a violation is to be made, these issues should be fully developed:

  1. whether the complainant is an individual with a disability;
  2. whether the complainant was qualified to perform the job in question, despite his or her disability;
  3. whether the complainant would have been qualified to perform the job if he or she were reasonably accommodated by the contractor;
  4. whether the complainant was in fact reasonably accommodated by the contractor; and
  5. whether the complaint was timely filed.

The following is a list of questions, the answers to which are useful in developing the background information for such complaints. It is important to note that these questions serve only as a guide and that each case must be examined individually for a proper determination of a violation. Every case is different and it may be necessary to investigate different factual issues as the case may dictate. The questions outlined below are some of the ones which an attorney in the DOL Office of the Solicitor would need answered in determining the legal sufficiency of a case.

I. Individual with a Disability

  1. The first thing to determine is whether the complainant is an individual with a disability as defined by the regulations.
  2. An individual with a disability is defined by 41 CFR 60-741.2 as any person who:
    1. has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more of such person's major life activities;
    2. has a record of such impairment; or
    3. is regarded as having such an impairment.
  3. An individual with a disability is "substantially limited" if he or she is likely to experience difficulty in securing, retaining or advancing in employment because of a disability.

II. The Complainant's Qualifications to Perform the Job

One of the most important requirements of Section 503/4212 is that the complainant must have been qualified to perform the job in question. Sometimes the complainant was fully qualified to perform the job and the disability had no effect on these qualifications. At other times, if the complainant were reasonably accommodated, he or she would have been qualified to perform the job. The following will help determine the complainant's qualifications:

  1. Obtain the "official" job description from the contractor.
    1. According to the contractor, was the complainant able to perform all or some of the described job duties?
    2. What were the job duties the complainant was able to perform?
    3. What were the job duties the complainant was not able to perform?
    4. According to the complainant, what were the job duties he or she was able and not able to perform?
  2. Obtain a description of the "actual" job functions from the complainant, the union, other employees who perform the same job, or anyone else having knowledge of the job. In particular determine:
    1. How does this description vary from the "official" job description?
    2. How does the job description vary according to location and other conditions particular to a certain area, e.g., same job in a suburb compared to a city?
    3. Does the job description vary depending on grade level, seniority, etc.?
    4. For each of the job duties required by the position, how frequently is it performed or what proportion of the total job does it represent?
  3. If it is determined that the complainant was in fact not qualified, determine the following:
    1. What were the job functions the complainant could perform?
    2. What other job categories could the complainant perform?
    3. Of these other categories, which jobs were nearest in skill, salary, promotional opportunities, etc., to the original job?
    4. Were other employees transferred to these jobs from the same job level as the complainant? Why?
  4. What, if any, were the medical restrictions placed upon the complainant by the contractor?
    1. Obtain all medical restrictions from the time they were first placed upon complainant until the present.
    2. Were the job restrictions based on the "official" job description or the "actual" job description?
    3. Did the complainant's doctor agree with the medical restrictions placed by the contractor?
      1. Which job description was this based upon?
      2. What different, if any, medical restrictions did complainant's doctor recommend?
    4. Did the complainant agree with the medical restrictions recommended by the contractor and/or his or her personal physician?
    5. Could the complainant still have done the job with the medical restrictions placed by the contractor?
    6. Could the complainant still have done the job with the medical restrictions placed by his or her own physician?

III. The Complainant's Qualifications to Perform the Job if Reasonably Accommodated

Though the complainant may not have been qualified to perform the job initially, if there were reasonable accommodations that the contractor could provide, he or she was still a qualified individual with a disability.

The following would help to determine if a reasonable accommodation was possible:

  1. What was the accommodation, if any, that the contractor did provide?
  2. How was this accommodation determined, e.g., did the complainant provide any input?
  3. Was this accommodation based on a contractor policy?
    1. If so, were all employees under the same policy or was the policy based on the type of disability, i.e., was the policy different for temporary disabilities and permanent disabilities?
    2. Obtain a copy of this written policy.
  4. Did the contractor offer complainant a reasonable accommodation, but one different from that which he or she was seeking? What was it?
  5. What accommodation did the complainant request? Did the contractor provide it? If not, why not?
  6. What other accommodations were available to contractor?
    1. Were there accommodations that could have been made in the original job based on the job functions the complainant actually performed?
    2. Were there accommodations in jobs of a similar skill, pay level, etc., available to contractor?
    3. Were other employees accommodated in any of the above ways?

IV. Was the Complainant Reasonably Accommodated?

In determining the extent of a contractor's reasonable accommodation responsibility the EOS should look at such factors as (1) business necessity and (2) financial cost and expenses in determining whether these accommodations would be an undue hardship on the contractor. If the contractor can show an undue hardship, the accommodation is not reasonable. It should be noted that the Supreme Court in Southeastern Community College v. Davis, 99 S. Ct. 2351 (1979), inferred that since Section 503 is an affirmative action law, it requires more than an "evenhanded approach" in accommodating individuals with disabilities. The following questions should help determine if the accommodations were reasonable:

  1. Were the accommodations that the complainant sought financially prohibitive?
    1. look to the size of the contractor
    2. look to the number of employees in the job category
    3. determine the financial outlook of the contractor, e.g., was this a time of growth with adding of employees, or was the contractor shrinking its labor force?
  2. Are there job openings in positions that the complain-ant is qualified for?
  3. What is the availability of jobs in job categories at a similar skill, pay level, opportunity level, etc.?
  4. What was the likelihood of relocation to a different job site as an accommodation?
  5. Were other employees hired or transferred into these job categories during the period accommodations were being sought for the complainant? Who were they and for what reasons were they transferred?
  6. Did the contractor accommodate other individuals with disabilities?

Appendix B: DOL PUBLICATIONS ON DISABLED/VETERANS' ISSUES

  1. Affirmative Action for the Handicapped: A Handbook for Equal Employment Opportunity Specialists of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) (April 1980) U. S. Department of Labor
  2. Literature Review of Key Issues Relevant to OFCCP Regulations Regarding the Employment of the Handicapped (March 29, 1985) U. S. Department of Labor
  3. Anti-Discrimination and Affirmative Action for Handicapped Workers Under State Law (February 1984) U. S. Department of Labor
  4. Office of Federal Contract Compliance Veterans and Handicapped Workers Training (Manual-Workbook) (May 1979)

Appendix C: INVESTIGATIVE REPORT

(name of complainant) v. (CAS #)

(name of contractor)

  1. Basis: (Executive Order 11246, as amended) (Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended) (Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended, 38 U.S.C. 4212)
  2. Contractor: (company name) (address) (name of contractor's representative) (contact telephone number)
  3. Contract Coverage: Contract number, agency name, date of award, duration of contract period, place of performance
  4. Issue(s): The personnel action which gave rise to the complaint and the applicable regulatory citations
  5. On-site Investigation: (date(s))
  6. Allegations: What the complainant alleged happened to him or her, including the circumstances of the action as the complainant expressed them in the complaint and in the interview.
  7. Rebuttal: The contractor's explanation of what happened and why it happened, including the circumstances of the action.
  8. Findings of Fact:
    1. Description of contractor's relevant personnel policies and practices; relevant union rules. (Reference case file location of copies)
    2. Results of review of documentary evidence and records. (Reference case file location of copies)
    3. Summary of relevant information obtained from interviews of contractor management and supervisory employee witnesses. (Reference case file location of interview notes.)
    4. Summary of relevant information obtained from inter — views of other witnesses. (Reference case file location of interview notes.)
  9. Analysis: Explanation of how and why the findings of fact confirm or refute the allegations.
  10. Conclusion: The contractor (has) (has not) violated (regulatory citation).
  11. Remedy: (To be used when a violation has been found)
    1. Describe all the remedies the complainant should receive.
    2. Describe the corrective actions the contractor must take regarding its policies and practices.

INDEX

Case File, Establishment of . . . . . . . . . . . 6-2

CC-4 Medical Release . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-8

Complaint Administration System . . . . . . . . . 6-3

Complaint Filing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-1

Conciliation of the Complaint . . . . . . . . . . 6-15

Conciliation Meeting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-16

Disability Discrimination Complaint Investigations. 6-7

Enforcement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-16

Entrance Conference in an Onsite Investigation . . 6-11

Executive Order Complaint Investigations . . . . . 6-7

Exit Conference in an Onsite Investigation . . . . 6-14

Facility Tour in an Onsite Investigation . . . . . 6-12

Filing a Complaint . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-1

I-9 Forms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-11

Internal Review (Section 503/38 U.S.C. 4212 Complaints) . . . . . . . . . . 6-4

Interviews with the Complainant . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-10

General Instructions . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-12

Investigative Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-6

Investigative Report . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-14

Legal Counsel, Use of by Complainant . . . . . . . 6-2

Notification of Results of Investigation (NRI) . 6-15

Onsite Investigation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-11

Providing the Contractor a Copy of the Complaint . 6-3

Reasonable Settlement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-16

Section 503 Complaint Investigations . . . . . . . 6-7

Settlement Before Completion of Investigation . . 6-15

Settlement After Completion of Investigation . . 6-15

State Employment Services, Responsibilities of . 6-9

Third Party Medical Opinion . . . . . . . . . . . 6-8

38 U.S.C. 4212 Complaint Investigations . . . . . 6-9

Timely Completion of the Investigation . . . . . . 6-3

Veterans' Employment and Training Service . . . . 6-10

Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act . 6-9