OFCCP Revises Voluntary Self-Identification Disability Form

The OFCCP announced on May 8, 2020 that it completed its awaited update to the Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability Form, which was recently approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and expires on May 31, 2023. Covered federal contractors and subcontractors have until August 4, 2020 to replace the old form.

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OFCCP Issues Directives Regarding Mediation Procedures and Audit Efficiency

The Department of Labor Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) released three new directives on April 17, 2020 that formalize its mediation procedures, seek to further increase the efficiency of its compliance evaluations (audits) and expand the role of the agency’s Ombudsman. The OFCCP’s recent directives were designed to further reduce the burden on federal contractors, and further confirms that the agency remains operational and committed to its enforcement efforts.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

OFCCP Recent Developments and Guidance on COVID-19

In the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, many federal contractors are questioning to what extent the Department of Labor (DOL) Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) will continue to operate and whether recently passed legislation includes any relief for federal contractors. While the OFCCP has made it clear that it remains “virtually” operational, it will not be “business as usual.”

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

OFCCP’s New Rules Target Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities

By: Laurie A. Holmes and Aaron M. Moyer

Familiar with this?  It’s time to update your affirmative action plans.  For the women and minorities plan, you gather your applicant data, prepare spreadsheets and update your written materials to reflect new goals and changes in your recruiting sources.  For the veterans and individuals with disabilities plan, you update a bit and you’re done.  Starting early next year, however, the rules will change making updates more onerous for employers.  On August 27, 2013, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs announced final rules for federal contractors regarding hiring and employment of disabled individuals and protected veterans and imposing new data retention and affirmative action obligations on contractors.  The rules are expected to be published in the Federal Register shortly and will become effective 180 days later.

The key changes include:

  • Benchmarks.  Contractors must establish benchmarks, using one of two methods approved by the OFCCP, to measure progress in hiring veterans.  Likewise, contractors must strive to hire individuals with disabilities to comprise at least seven percent of employees in each job group.  The OFCCP says these are meant to be aspirational, and are not designed to be quotas.
  • Data Analysis and Retention.  Contractors must document and update annually several quantitative comparisons for the number of veterans who apply for jobs and the number of veterans that they hire.  Likewise, for individuals with disabilities, contractors are required to conduct analyses of disabled applicants and those hired.  Such data must be retained for three years.
  • Invitation to Self-Identify.  Contractors must invite applicants to self-identify as protected veterans and as an individual with a disability at both the pre-offer and post-offer phases of the application process, using language to be provided by the OFCCP.  This particular requirement worries employers who know that the less demographic information they have about applicants, the better – especially when the application is denied.  Contractors must also invite their employees to self-identify as individuals with a disability every five years, using language to be provided by the OFCCP.

Additional information, including with respect new requirements such as incorporating the equal opportunity clause into contracts, job listings, and records access, can be found here (http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/vevraa.htm) and here (http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/section503.htm).

Contractors with an Affirmative Action Plan already in place on the effective date of the regulations will have additional time, until they create their next plans, to bring their plan into compliance.  However, whether they have a current Affirmative Action Plan or not, federal contractors should begin looking at these new rules now and take steps to ensure they are in compliance.