These Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) are offered to provide information about the response portal form process and to address initial questions contractors may have.

GENERAL

  1. What is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)?
  2. Who submitted this FOIA request?
  3. What is the scope of the request?
  4. How do contractors find out whether their company filed Type 2 EEO-1 Reports from 2016-2020?
  5. If a company was only a federal contractor for part of the time from 2016-2020, is its EEO-1 data included in this request?
  6. What is FOIA Exemption 4?
  7. Where can contractors find the Federal Register Notice that OFCCP published?
  8. How much time do contractors have to submit a written objection to the disclosure of this EEO-1 data to OFCCP?
  9. What happens if contractors do not submit a written objection by the deadline?
  10. What information should contractors include in a written objection if their company decides to file one?
  11. If a company does not have any objection to the release of the requested data, what should it do?
  12. If a contractor submits a written objection, how can it confirm that OFCCP has received it?
  13. What will OFCCP do with the written objection once it receives it?
  14. If a contractor submits a written objection and OFCCP, after its review, determines that the company’s EEO-1 Report Type 2 data can be withheld from disclosure, what happens then?
  15. If a contractor submits a written objection and OFCCP, after its review, determines that the EEO-1 Report Type 2 data must be disclosed, what happens then?
  16. Does OFFCP have a position on whether the requested data should be disclosed or withheld?
  17. How long after the contractors submit their response will they be notified of the determination?
  18. If contractors have additional questions that are not answered by these FAQs, how can they contact OFCCP to ask these questions?
  19. What do contractors do if they are using the web form, but have additional information they want to include in the objection that cannot be transmitted through the form?
  20. If the contractor wants to submit a written objection but cannot or does not want to use the web form OFCCP has created, how else can they submit a written objection?

GENERAL

1. What is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)?

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) provides that any person has the right to request access to federal agency records or information. Like all federal agencies, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) is required to disclose records requested in writing by any person. However, agencies may withhold information pursuant to nine exemptions and three exclusions contained in the statute. FOIA applies only to federal agencies and does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, or by state or local government agencies. Read more about FOIA at https://www.foia.gov/about.html.

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2. Who submitted this FOIA request?

Will Evans from the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR).

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3. What is the scope of the request?

The request seeks all Type 2 Consolidated EEO-1 Report demographic data (i.e., “Component 1” EEO-1 Reports) submitted by federal contractors and first-tier subcontractors for reporting years 2016-2020. The Type 2 Consolidated EEO-1 Report is one of several different types of reports that are filed by entities with multiple establishments. EEO-1 reports filed by single-establishment contractors (Type 1) and other EEO-1 reports filed by multi-establishment contractors (Types 3, 4, 6, and 8) are not covered by the request. EEO-1 reports containing compensation information (i.e., “Component 2” EEO-1 reports), which were collected by the EEOC, are also not covered by the request. Furthermore, Type 2 data only applies to multijurisdictional establishments and not to contractors with only one establishment. Contractors that only have one establishment are not subject to this request.

For more information on the EEO-1 Report, please refer to our EEO-1 FAQ at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/ofccp/faqs/eeo1-report.

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4. How do contractors find out whether their company filed Type 2 EEO-1 Reports from 2016-2020?

Many companies should have internal records of their EEO-1 filings that they can use to determine if they filed Type 2 reports during the relevant time period. However, if a company has filed EEO-1 Reports in the past, the EEO-1 Component 1 Reports from 2016-2020 are available in the EEO-1 Online Filing System. From the Company Dashboard, click on Historic Data (Prior EEO-1 Reports) to download prior year reports. As a last resort, companies may also email OFCCP at OFCCP-FOIA-EEO1-Questions@dol.gov to determine whether their data will be released under this FOIA request.

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5. If a company was only a federal contractor for part of the time from 2016-2020, is its EEO-1 data included in this request?

Any Type 2 EEO-1 Report filed from 2016-2020 indicating that a company was a federal contractor is included in the request.

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6. What is FOIA Exemption 4?

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is a statute that provides the public the right to request access to records from any federal agency. FOIA also contains some “exemptions” under which agencies may redact, or withhold entirely, certain information that is requested. FOIA Exemption 4 protects from disclosure “trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained from a person [that is] privileged or confidential.” 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(4).

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7. Where can contractors find the Federal Register Notice that OFCCP published?

The Federal Register Notice can be found at https://www.federalregister.gov/public-inspection/2022-17882/freedom-of-information-act-for-federal-contractors-type-2-consolidated-eeo-1-report-data.

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8. How much time do contractors have to submit a written objection to the disclosure of this EEO-1 data to OFCCP?

The deadline to submit written objections has been extended from September 19, 2022, to October 19, 2022. Written objections must be received by OFCCP no later than October 19, 2022.

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9. What happens if contractors do not submit a written objection by the deadline?

If OFCCP does not receive a written objection by the deadline, the agency will assume that the company has no objection to disclosure and will begin the process of sending the contractor’s Type 2 EEO-1 Report data to the FOIA requester (CIR).

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10. What information should contractors include in a written objection if their company decides to file one?

Contractors should include the first and last name of their company’s point of contact (POC), the POC’s phone number and email address, the company’s name and address and the parent company’s EEO-1 unit number.

Contractors should also provide as much information as possible addressing why they believe their Type 2 EEO-1 Report data should not be released under FOIA, including whether the information is commercial/financial and confidential. At a minimum, OFCCP suggests that written objections address the following questions:

  • Do you consider information from your EEO-1 Report to be a trade secret or commercial information? If yes, please explain why.
  • Do you customarily keep the requested information private or closely held? If yes, please explain what steps have been taken to protect data contained in your reports, and to whom it has been disclosed?
  • Do you contend that the government provided an express or implied assurance of confidentiality? If yes, please explain. If no, skip to the next question.
  • If you answered “no” to the previous question, were there expressed or implied indications at the time the information was submitted that the government would publicly disclose the information? If yes, please explain.
  • Do you believe that disclosure of this information could cause harm to an interest protected by Exemption 4 (such as by causing genuine harm to your economic or business interests)? If yes, please explain.

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11. If a company does not have any objection to the release of the requested data, what should it do?

If a company does not have any objections to the release of its data, it does not have to submit a written objection. OFCCP will release the company’s data to the FOIA requester (CIR) as part of a rolling production after the period of time for submitting written objections has expired.

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12. If a contractor submits a written objection, how can it confirm that OFCCP has received it?

If a contractor submits a written objection to the email or OFCCP mailing address provided, it will receive a response via email or mail acknowledging receipt.

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13. What will OFCCP do with the written objection once it receives it?

For contractors that submit timely objections, OFCCP will independently evaluate the objection(s) submitted and make a determination as to whether the information can be properly withheld under FOIA Exemption 4 based on the information provided in the written objection.

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14. If a contractor submits a written objection and OFCCP, after its review, determines that the company’s EEO-1 Report Type 2 data can be withheld from disclosure, what happens then?

OFCCP will notify the company and the FOIA requester of our determination to withhold the data.

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15. If a contractor submits a written objection and OFCCP, after its review, determines that the EEO-1 Report Type 2 data must be disclosed, what happens then?

OFCCP will provide written notice to the contractor of the reasons the disclosure objections were not sustained, a description of the information that will be disclosed, and a specified disclosure date that is a reasonable time after the contractor receives notice of OFCCP’s determination.

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16. Does OFFCP have a position on whether the requested data should be disclosed or withheld?

OFCCP believes the information requested may be protected from disclosure under FOIA Exemption 4, which protects disclosure of confidential commercial information, but has not yet determined whether the requested information is protected from disclosure under that exemption. OFCCP will make a determination about whether a particular contractor’s Type 2 EEO-1 data can be withheld under Exemption 4 after evaluating the written objection submitted by that contractor.

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17. How long after the contractors submit their response will they be notified of the determination?

We cannot give an exact time by when OFCCP will make its determination before we know how many objections we will receive. We intend to issue responses as soon as practicable.

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18. If contractors have additional questions that are not answered by these FAQs, how can they contact OFCCP to ask these questions?

The best method of contact for specific questions is by emailing us at OFCCPSubmitterResponse@dol.gov. They may also contact our Help Desk number at 1-800-397-6251.

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19. What do contractors do if they are using the web form, but have additional information they want to include in the objection that cannot be transmitted through the form?

The web form provides contractors with 50,000-character text boxes to allow contractors space to include any verbiage that they wish to include. If the contractor wishes to submit additional attachments, they can do so via OFCCPSubmitterResponse@dol.gov. The contractor should provide the same contact information in their email as provided on the online form to ensure their information is properly associated with the correct entity.

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20. If the contractor wants to submit a written objection but cannot or does not want to use the web form OFCCP has created, how else can they submit a written objection?

Given the volume of responses OFCCP expects to receive, we strongly encourage contractors to use the web form the agency has created to collect written objections.  However, if this method of submission is not possible, contractors may also submit written objections via email or by mail at the following information:

ATTN: FOIA Officer (FRN)
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs
Division of Management and Administrative Programs
200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Suite C3325
Washington, D.C. 20210
Email: OFCCPSubmitterResponse@dol.gov

Please note that responses by mail must be received by OFCCP no later than October 19, 2022.

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The contents of this document do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. This document is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies

Last updated on September 14, 2022