Employers have the responsibility to treat all qualified job applicants and workers equally and fairly, regardless of disability. Many federal contractors – those who do business with the federal government – also have the responsibility to take proactive steps to recruit, hire, retain, and advance qualified people with disabilities under Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act. The Excellence in Disability Inclusion (EDI) Awards will recognize those federal contractors who excel in this regard.
The EDI Award program will recognize up to two large and two small federal contractor establishments with the Excellence in Disability Inclusion Gold Award. Recipients of the Gold Award will receive a three-year moratorium on compliance evaluations with the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.
In addition, up to 20 additional federal contractors will be recognized as Pacesetters (honorable mentions).
Award winners will be required to participate in a post-award “Year of Engagement” program. Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) and the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) will oversee the recipients’ involvement in outreach efforts, such as presentations at relevant conferences, webinars, online national dialogues, and additional outreach to other employers. In addition, ODEP and OFCCP will work with Gold Award winners to generate tools and educational materials that support the broader federal contractor community adopting disability employment best practices. Although not required, Pacesetters will be invited to participate in these post-award activities.