U.S. Department of Labor Seek to Efficiently Resolve Contractor Compliance Evaluations
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor today announced three directives from the department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) to increase accountability and efficiency in its enforcement and to maximize the effectiveness of compliance assistance resources to assist contractors in meeting their responsibilities.
- Efficiency in Compliance Evaluations: This directive outlines the steps OFCCP will take to expeditiously resolve compliance evaluations and quickly remedy violations to benefit the workers OFCCP protects and the regulated community. Efficient compliance evaluations helps ensure the collection of relevant evidence in a timely manner.
- Pre-Referral Mediation Program: This directive establishes a mediation program to resolve matters before spending significant time and resources in the enforcement process. OFCCP will offer this program to federal contractors and subcontractors to resolve findings of discrimination after the Show Cause Notice has been issued but prior to referrals to the Office of the Solicitor for enforcement. This mediation is not a substitute for the conciliation period between a Notice of Violation and Show Cause Notice.
- Ombuds Service Supplement and Protocol: This directive supplements Directive 2018-09 with additional details outlined in an Ombuds Service Protocol, which explains the principles of the Ombuds Service. While some stakeholders appear reluctant to contact OFCCP directly, the agency is committed to engaging in transparent communications and created the Ombuds Service as an independent mechanism to allow stakeholders to share their concerns with OFCCP or provide general feedback and recommendations to improve agency administration.
“Through these three directives, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs further demonstrates its strong commitment to resolving cases promptly to obtain significant remedies for affected workers, while minimizing burden and delay for federal contractors seeking to comply. In particular, the agency believes the Ombuds Service will ensure efficient use of dispute resolution resources, including mediation, by OFCCP,” said Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs Director Craig E. Leen.
OFCCP enforces Executive Order 11246, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974. These laws, as amended, make it illegal for contractors and subcontractors doing business with the federal government to discriminate in employment because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or status as a protected veteran. In addition, contractors and subcontractors are prohibited from discriminating against applicants or employees because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their compensation or the compensation of others subject to certain limitations. Executive Order 11246 requires that federal contractors provide equal employment opportunity through affirmative action. For more information, please call OFCCP’s toll-free helpline at 800-397-6251 or visit https://www.dol.gov/ofccp/.
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.