Tuesday, August 17, 2010

OFCCP initiates regulatory revisions for affirmative action obligations toward individuals with disabilities and covered veterans

Littler Mendelson
Alissa Horvitz, Joshua Roffman and Matt Nusbaum USA August 17 2010

Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking ("ANPRM") Regarding Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act Relating to Meaningful Outreach for Individuals with Disabilities

In anticipation of strengthening the regulations requiring government contractors to engage in meaningful outreach for qualified individuals with disabilities and before issuing actual proposed regulations, the Office of Federal Contractor Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is asking government contractors to respond by September 21, 2010, to 18 questions.
The questions can be categorized into several categories: (1) how can affirmative action requirements for individuals with disabilities be made more effective; (2) what affirmative action efforts for individuals with disabilities have proved effective for federal contractors; (3) whether the establishment of placement goals for individuals with disabilities would be feasible and effective and how placement goals for individuals with disabilities could be established; (4) whether soliciting self-identification of disability status of all applicants would be effective in opening more opportunities to individuals with disabilities; and (5) what special considerations should OFCCP account for in revising its affirmative action obligations for individuals with disabilities with regard to small entities and businesses.
Below are the specific questions from OFCCP's July 23, 2010 ANPRM:
How can the affirmative action requirements of Section 503 be strengthened to measurably increase employment opportunities of covered contractors for individuals with disabilities? If available, include examples or information illustrating the effectiveness of the suggested new requirements.
What measures have contractors and subcontractors taken to fulfill the current affirmative action requirements of Section 503? How much did these measures cost?
What barriers currently impede Federal contractors from hiring people with disabilities?
Are there changes that could be made to the existing language on permissible qualifications standards that would better ensure equal employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities? ...

Proposed Regulations for Improved Outreach and Reporting Regarding Affirmative Action Obligations for Covered Veterans Submitted to the White House by OFCCP
On July 2, 2010, OFCCP sent to the Office of Management and Budget ("OMB") its proposed rule relating to "Affirmative Action and Nondiscrimination Obligations of Contractors, Subcontractors, Evaluation of Recruitment and Placement Results under the VEVRAA of 1974, As Amended."
OFCCP has previously announced that it wants to strengthen the extent to which government contractors are engaging in meaningful outreach for covered veterans, and this was a topic that Director Patricia Shiu covered extensively in her town hall meetings last year and this year.
Once OMB approves the proposed regulation, OFCCP will submit it for publication in The Federal Register, and will afford contractors an opportunity to submit comments.

Full Story: http://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=4ac1e369-cb48-4daa-be9a-237edc6fd95a

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