Sunday, June 27, 2010

Texas GOP Wants End To IRS, No One-World Currency

CBS2 (Texas)
Jun 27, 2010 11:45 am US/Central
State Republicans Issue 2010 Platform

NEW YORK (CBS) ―
AP
The Texas State Republican Party released its 2010 platform recently and the document has been getting a bit of attention due to its stance on such issues as same-sex marriage, sex and religion, among other subjects. The preamble of the 2010 platform, published on the Texas GOP website, boasts that Texas is "the embodiment of the conservative dream in America."Some issues mentioned in the party's platform call for traditional marriage between "a natural man and a natural woman....

The group calls for equal opportunity for all Americans regardless of race in its argument against Affirmative Action. A similar reason is given for the party's opposition to multiculturalism being taught in schools, citing the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s call for people to be judged by the content of their character and their skin color.

Full Story: http://cbs2chicago.com/politics/Texas.GOP.Platform.2.1775213.html

Employers Urged to Save Pay Documents

Workforce Management
To defend themselves against allegations of discriminatory pay practices, employers may have to go back decades to provide documentation to defend against those claims. Such records may include payroll files, compensation programs, performance reviews and any of the decisions and guidelines around starting pay, promotional pay and merit increases. By Judy Greenwald
February 2010

The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 has led many employers to re-examine their document retention policies so they’ll be prepared if they are sued under its provisions, but some experts say more work needs to be done.
The act provides that every paycheck resulting from a previous discriminatory pay decision constitutes a violation of several federal laws, meaning employers may have to go back decades to provide documentation to defend against such claims.
A survey released in August 2009 by Hewitt Associates of 1,156 organizations found that 88 percent were aware of the law. It found that 38 percent had conducted a pay-equity analysis, but 36 percent had taken no action in response to the law.

Full Story: http://www.workforce.com/archive/feature/27/03/36/index.php

Hilton Grand Vacations Settles EEOC Pregnancy Discrimination Lawsuit

US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Press Release
6-14-10

Employee With Pregnancy-Related Complications Forced Out of Job, Federal Agency Charges

MIAMI – Hilton Grand Vacations Company, LLC, an Orlando, Fla.-based resort corporation, has agreed to settle a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit brought by the U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today. The EEOC had charged that Hilton Grand Vacations violated federal law when it persuaded an employee to resign her position because of her pregnancy by falsely promising to rehire her after the birth of her child.
According to the EEOC’s suit, an employee who worked as a recruiter for Hilton in Orlando was repeatedly passed over for numerous positions after she resigned due to a preg­nancy-related medical condition. The EEOC said that although Hilton promised to rehire the former employee after she gave birth, the company passed her over in favor of other, less qualified candidates when she repeatedly applied for subsequent open positions.
Employment discrimination because of pregnancy violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. Hilton Grand Vacations Company, LLC, Case No. 6:09-cv-01673-GAP-DAB in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Orlando Division) after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement out of court through its conciliation process.
In addition to monetary damages of $25,000 for the discrimination victim, the three-year consent decree resolving the case includes injunctive relief enjoining the company from engag­ing in sex or pregnancy discrimination; requires the posting of a notice about the settlement; and requires the company to conduct training and to report information about sex and pregnancy discrimination complaints it receives to the EEOC for monitoring.
“Women who have complications with their pregnancies need to be treated the same as any other employee with a medical condition,” said EEOC Acting Regional Attorney Michael O’Brien. “Employers must not make employment decisions on the basis of stereo­types.”
EEOC Acting Supervisory Trial Attorney Celia Liner added, “Employers must take firm steps to assure that they act in accordance with the law when making employment decisions. The law requires that pregnant women, and women returning to work after childbirth, are afforded the same rights as any other employee.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment dis­crim­ination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.

US Department of Labor clarifies FMLA definition of ‘son and daughter’

US Department of Labor
Wage and Hour Division
News Release
WHD News Release: [06/22/2010]
Contact Name: Dolline Hatchett
Phone Number: (202) 693-4667
Release Number: 10-0877-NAT

Interpretation is a win for all families no matter what they look like
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor today clarified the definition of "son and daughter" under the Family and Medical Leave Act to ensure that an employee who assumes the role of caring for a child receives parental rights to family leave regardless of the legal or biological relationship.
The FMLA allows workers to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period to care for loved ones or themselves. The 1993 law also allows employees to take time off for the adoption or the birth of a child. The administrator interpretation issued by Nancy J. Leppink, deputy administrator of the department's Wage and Hour Division, clarifies that these rights, which provide work-family balance, extend to the various parenting relationships that exist in today's world. This action is a victory for many non-traditional families, including families in the lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender community, who often in the past have been denied leave to care for their loved ones.
"No one who loves and nurtures a child day-in and day-out should be unable to care for that child when he or she falls ill," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "No one who steps in to parent a child when that child's biological parents are absent or incapacitated should be denied leave by an employer because he or she is not the legal guardian. No one who intends to raise a child should be denied the opportunity to be present when that child is born simply because the state or an employer fails to recognize his or her relationship with the biological parent. These are just a few of many possible scenarios. The Labor Department's action today sends a clear message to workers and employers alike: All families, including LGBT families, are protected by the FMLA."
As the interpretation makes clear, an uncle who is caring for his young niece and nephew when their single parent has been called to active military duty may exercise his right to family leave. Likewise, a grandmother who assumes responsibility for her sick grandchild when her own child is debilitated will be able to seek family and medical leave from her employer. And an employee who intends to share in the parenting of a child with his or her same sex partner will be able to exercise the right to FMLA leave to bond with that child.
"This is a critical step in ensuring that children have the support and care they need from the persons who have assumed that responsibility," said Leppink. "Nothing in the statute or regulations suggests that we should restrict the rights of various individuals who take on that very important role."
The administrator interpretation provides guidance to employers in applying the FMLA's provisions in the workplace and ensures that employees are aware of their rights. Under the act, covered employers must grant eligible employees up to 12 workweeks of unpaid leave during any 12-month period for the birth and care of a newborn child; to adopt or assume care for a foster child; to care for an immediate family member (spouse, child or parent) with a serious health condition; or to take medical leave due to a serious health condition.
For more information on the FMLA and the administrative interpretation, visit the Wage and Hour Division's website, http://www.dol.gov/whd, or call the division's toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243).

Thursday, June 24, 2010

MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND CUNY CHANCELLOR GOLDSTEIN ATTEND RECOGNITION CEREMONY FOR STUDENTS WHO COMPLETED THE CITY’S ACCELERATED STUDY IN ASSOCIATE PROGRAM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PR- 282-10
June 22, 2010

City Graduation Rate Far Exceeds National Average with 53 Percent of Students Receiving Degrees in Three YearsCenter for Economic Opportunity Program Provides Support to Help Students and Working Adults Complete Associate Degrees

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg will join City University of New York Chancellor Matthew Goldstein to preside at a graduation recognition ceremony later today for the students who completed the City’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP). The program provides extensive support to help students and working adults complete associate degrees. When the program was launched in 2007, the Mayor and Chancellor set the ambitious goal of graduating at least 50 percent of students within three years – a rate that is more than three times the national average for urban community colleges. The City has already reached that goal, with 53 percent of students completing their coursework, and is on track to reach 56 percent in September.
“Three years ago, our Center for Economic Opportunity developed the Accelerated Study in Associate Programs based on the simple notion that we can make school schedules more conducive to the demands of working families,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Our community colleges are the gateway to opportunity for so many people looking to further their own careers and create a better life for their families. They serve as a model for other cities that want to restore America’s leadership in higher education.”

Full Press Release:http://www.nyc.gov/portal/site/nycgov/menuitem.c0935b9a57bb4ef3daf2f1c701c789a0/index.jsp?pageID=mayor_press_release&catID=1194&doc_name=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nyc.gov%2Fhtml%2Fom%2Fhtml%2F2010a%2Fpr282-10.html&cc=unused1978&rc=1194&ndi=1

Allen president accused in second sexual harassment suit

The State
BY JEFF WILKINSON - jwilkinson@thestate.com
Wednesday, Jun. 23, 2010


Allen University president Charles Young has been accused of sexual harassment for the second time since 2005.

Sonya Melton, the Columbia school’s associate vice president for enrollment management, filed a lawsuit in federal court this month. The 17-page complaint alleges that from 2006 to 2008, Young coerced Melton into having sex, attempted to control her relationships with others, and choked and shoved her.
Melton claims that in 2008, after requesting to meet with school officials, Young demoted her from a job as vice president and moved her to a “moldy, bug infested” basement office.
In her suit, Melton also named the university and African Methodist Episcopal Church, which runs the college. She claims university and church officials were aware Young had the “propensity to sexually harass” female subordinates but took no action.

Read more: http://www.thestate.com/2010/06/23/1345262/allen-president-accused-in-second.html#ixzz0rm0nXSI3

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Ten Ways To Retain Faculty of Color

Diverse Issues in Higher Education
by Dr. Marybeth Gasman, June 22, 2010

Recently I gave a talk at the American Association of University Professors’ annual meeting. The talk focused on the retention of faculty of color—unfortunately only one White faculty member attended the session. My comments were directed at those in positions of power within historically White institutions—I was saddened that many of these individuals did not attend the session.
Below are the 10 ways to retain faculty of color that I discussed in my talk. Many of these suggestions can be used with all faculty members. I invite you to add more in the comment feature of this blog.
1) Hire a critical mass of faculty of color. Quite a few historically White institutions have done this and it works. Not only does hiring a critical mass show commitment on the part of an institution, it also helps to create a less isolating and alienating atmosphere on campus and in individual departments. [For those who object: we hire critical masses of White faculty all the time.]

Full Story: http://diverseeducation.com/blogpost/272/ten-ways-to-retain-faculty-of-color.html

Community College of Baltimore County to Pay $50,000 to Settle EEOC Age Discrimination Suit and Employee’s Retaliation Claims

US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
PRESS RELEASE 6-21-10

College Refused to Hire 60-Year Old ESOL Advisor Based on Age, Agency Charged

BALTIMORE – The Community College of Baltimore County will pay $50,000 and provide equitable relief to settle an age discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the employee’s retaliation lawsuit, the agency announced today.
The EEOC charged in its suit that the Community College of Baltimore County failed to hire Sheri Chosak as a part-time English as a Second Language (ESOL) academic advisor at its Owings Mills campus because she was 60 years old. Chosak has worked for the college as a registration clerk since 2001 at its Owings Mills campus.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits employers from refusing to hire or promote individuals who are 40 or older because of age. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, Northern District (Civil Action Number 1:08-cv-02563-CCB) after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement out of court through its conciliation process.
In addition to the monetary relief to Chosak, the consent decree settling the lawsuit enjoins the college from further engaging in any employment practice which discriminates on the basis of age, including failing to hire or promote applicants or employees based on age. The college will provide at least two hours of mandatory training on preventing age discrimination and federal anti-discrimination laws to all managers at its Owings Mills campus. The college will also post a notice on the resolution of the lawsuit.
“Employers who refuse to hire qualified applicants based on age not only forgo the opportunity to hire talented workers, they also risk having to defend themselves against an EEOC lawsuit,” said EEOC Regional Attorney Debra Lawrence of the agency’s Philadelphia District Office, which oversees Pennsylvania, Delaware, West Virginia, Maryland and parts of New Jersey and Ohio.
In Fiscal Year 2009, age-based charges reached a total of 22,778, their second-highest level ever.
In July 2009, the EEOC held a public hearing on age discrimination and barriers to the employment of older workers. Additional information about the hearing can be found on the EEOC’s web site at http://www.eeoc.gov/abouteeoc/meetings/7-15-09/index.cfm.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the Commission is available at its web site at (www.eeoc.gov).

Monday, June 21, 2010

When Men Are Harassed

Workforce Management
May 2010

While the majority of sexual harassment claims involve male-on-female harassment, allegations of male-on-male harassment—and even female-on-male harassment—are on the rise. Employers should not only be aware of this trend, but also understand how to identify all forms of sexual harassment and adjust their harassment policies accordingly. By Ron Chapman Jr.

A boss corners a female subordinate in the copy room and threatens to demote her unless she goes to dinner with him; a group of male employees makes off-color remarks to a female co-worker about her appearance; a male employee asks his female co-worker about her sexual activities. Stereotypical depictions of sexual harassment such as these are prevalent in today’s movies, TV shows and even corporate harassment training videos.
Although most sexual harassment claims involve male-on-female harassment, allegations of male-on-male harassment—and even female-on-male harassment—are on the rise. Employers should not only be aware of this trend, but also understand how to identify all forms of sexual harassment and adjust their harassment policies accordingly.
Prevalence Since 1990, the percentage of sexual harassment claims filed by men has doubled to more than 16 percent, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Full Story: http://www.workforce.com/section/03/feature/27/18/35/index.html

Balance Staffing to Pay $100,000 Under Decree in EEOC Disability Discrimination Suit

US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
PRESS RELEASE 6-16-10

Owner Took Job Back From Woman Because of Blindness, Federal Agency Charged
CHICAGO – A federal judge entered a consent decree on June 15 requiring a nationwide staffing company to pay $100,000 to a blind woman against whom the company discriminated because of her blindness according to a suit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.
In its lawsuit, the EEOC charged that Balance Staffing’s owner Robert Feinstein hired Jocelyn Snower, a recruiter, to help him launch a Balance Staffing center in Illinois, which was named Balance Financial, Inc. The EEOC said that when Robert Feinstein hired Snower, he did not realize that she was blind, but when learned she was, he immediately revoked the job offer, even though she had already started recruiting for him.
Discrimination in employment on account of disability violates Title I of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). The EEOC filed suit EEOC v. Balance Staffing and Balance Staffing d/b/a Balance Financial, Inc., No. 09 CV-06004) on September 25, 2009 in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement out of court through its conciliation process.
The three-year consent decree resolving the suit, approved by U.S. District Judge Ruben Castillo. with the consent of the parties, will also require Balance Staffing and Balance Professional, Inc. to report any further complaints of disability discrimination or retaliation to the EEOC. The owner and manager of the company will also have to be trained annually on disability discrimination. The decree contains an injunction prohibiting the companies from engaging in further discrimination on the basis of disability and from retaliating against anyone who opposes disability discrimination, files a discrimination charge or participates in a government investigation, proceeding, or hearing.
John Rowe, EEOC district director in Chicago, said, “Balance Staffing’s decision to fire Ms. Snower not only reflected poor business judgment, since she is an experienced recruiter, but it was expensive misjudgment -- to the tune of $100,000.”
Regional Attorney John Hendrickson said, “The result of this case demonstrates how seriously we at EEOC take disability discrimination. Anyone who is a victim of discriminatory actions, such as those actions allegedly taken by Balance Staffing’s management, should not hesitate to bring the issue to light by notifying the EEOC. We stand ready to act in cases like this.”
The government’s litigation effort was led by EEOC Supervisory Trial Attorney Diane I. Smason and Trial Attorney Laura R. Feldman.
According to Balance Staffing’s website (www.balancestaff.com), Balance Staffing provides personalized staffing services, with locations in California, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Virginia. The website also states that Balance Staffing handles the administrative tasks of hiring, recruiting, and employing personnel; various divisions include manufacturing, clerical, hospitality, engineering, construction, and light industrial.
The EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws against employment discrimination. Further information is available at www.eeoc.gov.

http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/2-16-10a.cfm

Starbucks To Pay $80,000 To Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Suit

US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
PRESS RELEASE 6-15-10


EEOC Says Coffee Company Refused to Hire Applicant Because of His MS
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A Starbucks store in Russellville, Ark., will pay $80,000 to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Com­mis­sion (EEOC), the agency announced today.
The EEOC’s suit, (Civil Action No. 4:09-CV-0715, filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, at Little Rock), charged that Starbucks failed to hire Chuck Hannay because of his multiple sclerosis. According to the EEOC, Hannay applied for one of six open barista positions but was never contacted for an interview. EEOC alleged that individuals with less experience and availability were hired instead of Hannay.
Such conduct violates the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits employment discrimination based on a person’s disability.
In addition to the monetary relief, the consent decree settling the suit, approved by U.S. District Judge Brian Miller, enjoins Starbucks from discriminating on the bases of disability and retaliation. Further, the decree requires the company to provide training to its managers and assistant managers on disability discrimination, to submit two reports to the EEOC on the training and any such complaints, and to post a notice reinforcing the company’s policies on the ADA. Starbucks will also make a good-faith effort to hire individuals with disabilities at its Russellville location by notifying Arkansas Rehabilitation Services of all job openings.
“People with disabilities should have equal opportunities for employment,” said Regional Attorney Faye A. Williams of the EEOC’s Memphis District Office, which has jurisdiction over Arkansas, Tennessee and certain counties in Mississippi. “This case demon­strates the EEOC’s commit­ment to combating discrimination that prevents individuals with disabilities from taking their rightful place in the work force.”
Pamela Dixon, EEOC trial attorney, said, “We commend Starbucks for working in a cooperative manner with the EEOC to quickly resolve the lawsuit and for instituting provisions in the workplace to prevent such conduct in the future.”
Starbucks is an international coffee company based in Seattle, Wash. According to company information, there are over 16,000 Starbucks locations in 49 countries.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the Commission is available on the agency’s web site at www.eeoc.gov.

http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/6-15-10b.cfm

DOL Verification Procedures under E.O. 13496

On June 15, 2010, the US Department of Labor, Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) issued a directive to the compliance officer staff regarding verifying compliance with the President's Executive Order 13496, Notification of Employee Rights under Federal Labor Laws. The directive relates to the procedures for compliance verification during the OFCCP on-site compliance evaluation.

For a copy of the directive, go to: http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/directives/dir290.pdf

The following is a presentation from the OFCCP website regarding the Executive Order and the regulations:

Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)
New Employee Notification Requirements for Federal Contractors and Subcontractors

Under Department of Labor regulations, http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2010/pdf/2010-11639.pdf , contractors holding contracts with the Federal government and their subcontractors are required, beginning on June 21, 2010, to post notices informing employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The notice to employees required by the regulations inform employees about their rights under the NLRA to form, join and assist a union and to bargain collectively with their employer; provides examples of unlawful employer and union conduct that interferes with those rights; and indicates how employees can contact the National Labor Relations Board, the Federal agency that enforces those rights, with questions or to file complaints. Contractors that violate the Labor Department's regulations requiring employee notification of these rights may be subject to sanctions, including suspension or cancellation of the contract.
The regulations require Federal contractors:
to post the required employee notice conspicuously in and around their plants and offices so that it is prominent and readily seen by employees who are covered by the NLRA and who engage in contract-related activity;
to post the required notice electronically if they communicate with employees electronically, which requires posting a link to the Department of Labor's website containing the employee notice where they customarily place other electronic notices to employees about their jobs; and
to insert provisions in their subcontracts that require their subcontractors to comply with the same posting requirements as well.
Contractors and subcontractors may obtain the required poster in any of the three ways. The Labor Department will print posters and provide them to Federal contracting departments and agencies for supply to contractors and subcontractors. In addition, contractors and subcontractors can request posters from the field offices of the Labor Department's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/contacts/ofnation2.htm) , or Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) (http://www.dol.gov/olms/contacts/lmskeyp.htm). Finally, contractors and subcontractors can acquire the poster from OLMS' website by downloading it from http://www.olms.dol.gov or by calling (202) 693-0123. Compliance information for contractors and subcontractors can be found at OFCCP's website http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/Contractor_Compliance_presentation.ppt

http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/EO13496_Presentation.htm

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Why Fearmongering About a White Minority in America Is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

AlterNet
By Joshua Holland, AlterNet
Posted on June 19, 2010
http://www.alternet.org/story/147235/

Whites are projected to become a minority in the United States in the year 2050. It’s a terrifying prospect for Americans who fear the loss of their privileged status.
But the truth is that in 2050, “whites,” as most people understand the term, will still make up 74 percent of the population (if the projections are right). Only “non-Hispanic whites” are expected to become a minority. But there’s little chance that the designation -- which the Census Bureau only added in 1980 -- will live until that time. History tells us that “white Hispanics” -- light-skinned people with an Hispanic heritage -- will soon become, simply, “white people,” as part of the American “mainstream.”
In 2050, white people will not only remain a majority, but they’ll also retain their disproportionate cultural, political and economic influence. In other words, people freaking out about the loss of white privilege have no cause for alarm -- it is safe. As Chauncey DeVega put it, “whites are by definition the majority group in the United States,” and “while heavily policed,” the definition of “whiteness as a racial grouping is ever expanding.”
So when that date comes around, it’ll be Y2K for white people in America -- expect plenty of teeth to be gnashed and then brace yourself for nothing to happen.

Full Story:http://www.alternet.org/story/147235/why_fearmongering_about_a_white_minority_in_america_is_wrong%2C_wrong%2C_wrong?page=2

Backers of California's Preference Ban Seek a Role in Its Legal Defense

The Chronicle of Higher Education
June 17, 2010, 03:14 PM ET

Several prominent supporters of California's Proposition 209, which barred public colleges from considering applicants' race and ethnicity, are seeking a role in defending the measure from a lawsuit challenging it as unconstitutional. Their motion to intervene as defendants in the case argues that the defendants now named in the lawsuit—Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the University of California's Board of Regents—cannot be counted on to put up a strong fight on behalf of the preference ban, which the state's voters passed in 1996. The intervention motion was filed by Ward Connerly, a former University of California regent who helped lead the campaign for Proposition 209; the American Civil Rights Foundation, which Mr. Connerly established; and the California affiliate of the National Association of Scholars. The Pacific Legal Foundation is representing them.

http://chronicle.com/blogPost/Backers-of-Californias/24880/?sid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en

Friday, June 18, 2010

Policy Summit Tackles Changing U.S. Demographics

Diverse Issues in Higher Education
by Joyce Jones , June 18, 2010

WASHINGTON – The United States is a country whose youth population is browning while its White population is heavily concentrated in older age brackets. According to recent census data, 35 percent of the U.S. population is non-White. And while discussing the enormous demographic shift that the country is experiencing, people often refer to the year 2042 when the U.S. will be a majority-minority country. In essence, much of that change is already here.
As Ronald Brownstein, veteran journalist and political director of National Journal Group media company, pointed out Thursday during a National Journal policy summit on demographics and the workforce of the future, currently 65 percent of the population is White, compared to 70 percent in 2000 and 80 percent in 1980. The changes are even more profound among younger age cohorts. Generation Y, aged 30 and under, is two-fifths non-White, as is 45 percent of the population under 18. In addition, minority children comprised 49 percent of births in the past year, noted Brownstein, who moderated the policy summit.

Full Story: http://diverseeducation.com/article/13893/policy-summit-tackles-changing-u-s-demographics.html

Kagan: Affirmative action good law _ good politics

Associated Press
(AP) – Jun 4, 2010

WASHINGTON — As a White House adviser Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan indicated support for affirmative action as good law and good politics.
The Clinton administration was wrestling with how to weigh in on a case involving a white New Jersey school teacher who was laid off instead of an equally senior black colleague. Kagan endorsed a narrow legal argument to try to prevent a Supreme Court ruling effectively ending affirmative action policies.

Full Story: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gqScqq5qtv4yw96QTlRrbNHhIUFAD9G4M4EG1

University updates sexual assault policy

The Hill (Tufts University)
by thetuftsdaily on June 17, 2010

The University Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (OEO) has quietly published an updated version of the University’s sexual assault policy to its website.
The language of the new policy is more comprehensive than the previous version, and it provides a detailed list of resources for victims of sexual assault. The nine-page document lists contact information for students, faculty, and staff on all three campuses, as well as additional numbers for off-campus resources located in the greater Boston area.

Full Story: http://blogs.tuftsdaily.com/thehill/?p=241

Did Fried Frank Discriminate Against Older Secretaries?

The AmLaw Daily
Posted by Zach Lowe
June 17, 2010 5:03 PM

We now know of a fourth ex-staffer of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson suing the firm for discrimination. This case, an updated version of which was filed Wednesday in federal court in Manhattan, makes broader claims about how the firm decided on which secretaries to lay off in August 2008, court records show.
Judith Cuttler, a former Fried Frank secretary in her early 60s, alleges that Fried Frank discriminated against older secretaries and those who had taken family or medical leave when the firm laid off at least eight secretaries in the summer of 2008, according to court records. Another former Fried Frank secretary, Roseanne Zito, made similar claims in a suit filed last November. Both clients are represented by J. Patrick DeLince of DeLince Law and Daniel Alterman of Alterman & Boop. Bettina Plevan of Proskauer Rose is representing Fried Frank in the Cuttler case and at least one other employment discrimination case. She declined to comment, through her secretary, when contacted on Thursday.

Full Story: http://amlawdaily.typepad.com/amlawdaily/2010/06/cuttlerff.html

Striving for Educational Equity

Inside Higher Ed
June 18, 2010

WASHINGTON -- Six years after they were first published, the data that Anthony Carnevale and Stephen J. Rose produced showing that students from the lowest socioeconomic quartile of Americans were 25 times less likely than wealthy Americans to enroll in the most selective colleges have helped to reshape public policy around higher education. In addition to building the case for more federal and state financial support for students from low-income backgrounds, the numbers also helped prompt a group of highly selective public and private institutions to alter their admissions and financial aid policies and practices to focus more on low-income students.
One of those programs, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Carolina Covenant program, was celebrated Thursday at an event here at which the Century Foundation released a followup to the 2004 book -- America's Untapped Resource: Low-Income Students in Higher Education -- in which Carnevale's and Rose's original analysis appeared.
The new book, Rewarding Strivers: Helping Low-Income Students Succeed in College, includes one chapter on the Carolina Covenant, describing the progress that one highly selective university has made in transforming itself. As described by Edward B. Fiske, the program's initial results, in terms of low-income students' access to and success at North Carolina, are promising.

Full Story: http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2010/06/18/strivers

Thursday, June 17, 2010

American Association for Affirmative Action Announces Award Winners at its Access, Equity and Diversity Summit and Annual Meeting



American Association for Affirmative Action Announces Award Winners at its Access, Equity and Diversity Summit and Annual Meeting

Outstanding leaders in civil rights, access for the disabled and veterans rights will receive association honors at upcoming Summit in Raleigh, NC; Three who staged historic sit-in at Woolworth’s will be celebrated

Washington, DC (PRWEB) June 17, 2010 -- The American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA), an organization of equal opportunity, diversity and affirmative action professionals, announced the award recipients who will be honored at its upcoming Access, Equity and Diversity Summit and Annual Meeting, June 30 – July 1, 2010. The Summit will be held at the Raleigh Marriott City Center, 500 Fayetteville Street, Raleigh, NC. The Summit theme: “The Work goes on, the Cause endures and the Dream shall never die,” is based on a speech given by the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy, and the association will remember the Senator at the Summit. The three living members who staged a sit-in at Woolworth’s in Greensboro, N.C. in 1960 will also be recognized.
This year, the AAAA’s awardees are: the Job Accommodation Network (JAN) and Military Missions in Action, Edward M. Kennedy Community Service Award; Cheryl Queen and Rick Stone, Compass Group North America, Cesar Estrada Chavez Award; Major General Joseph A. McNeil, Franklin E. McCain, and Jibreel Khazan of the “Greensboro Four,” Rosa Parks Award; RiseSmart, Champion of Diversity Award; and Dr. James H. Johnson Jr., the William R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of strategy and entrepreneurship and director of the Urban Investment Strategies Center, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the Drum Major for Justice Award.
AAAA President ReNeĆ© S. Dunman commended the awardees for their contributions to the cause of equal opportunity, access and diversity in their various fields. “All of these award recipients have shown through their good works an outstanding commitment to equal opportunity. They are to be commended for their lives in service to the disadvantaged and are distinguished role models for the next generation,” she said.
Cesar Estrada Chavez Award The Cesar Estrada Chavez Award is presented to an individual who has demonstrated leadership in support of workers' rights and humanitarian issues. Under the leadership of Cheryl Queen and Richard Stone, the Compass Group partnered with a South Florida workers’ rights organization, the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, to increase the wages and improve the working conditions of mainly Latino, Mayan Indian and Haitian immigrants working in low-wage jobs throughout the state of Florida.
Rosa Parks Award The Rosa Parks Award is presented to an individual who has served as a role model and leader to others through personal achievements, excellence in a chosen field, commitment to human rights, civil rights, and social issues, and contributions to the betterment of society. Major General Joseph McNeil, Franklin E. McCain and Jibreel Khazan are honored for their history-making sit-in at Woolworth’s in Greensboro, NC in 1960.
Edward M. Kennedy Community Service Award The Edward M. Kennedy Community Service Award is presented to an individual or organization demonstrating outstanding service to a community based organization or issue. In honor of the late Senator Kennedy, AAAA changed the name of this award in recognition of Kennedy’s lifetime of service. The Job Accommodation Network (JAN), one of two Kennedy Community Service Award honorees, is the leading source of free, expert, and confidential guidance on workplace accommodations and disability employment issues. Working toward practical solutions that benefit both employer and employee, JAN helps individuals with disabilities enhance their employability and shows employers how to capitalize on the value and talent that people with disabilities add to the workplace.
Military Missions in Action (MMIA), located in Fuquay - Varina, NC, provides needed services to veterans who have suffered serious injury resulting in disabilities. The majority of Military Missions in Action's services involve home modifications needed to enable independent living for disabled veterans on their return from service. MMIA is the second Edward M. Kennedy Community Service Awardee.
Champion of Diversity Award The Champion of Diversity Award is given to an organization or corporation that has demonstrated an outstanding level of dedication to AAAA’s mission of fostering equal opportunity as well as exhibiting outstanding commitment to diversity. RiseSmart, the 2010 recipient of the Champion of Diversity Award, is a “next generation” outplacement company headquartered in Silicon Valley, CA, and boasts a very ethnically diverse staff serving those seeking employment opportunities.
Drum Major for Justice AwardThe Drum Major for Justice Award was first given in 2008 to recognize two former members of Congress who had contributed a lifetime of work for equal opportunity through affirmative action. The original recipients were Rep. Augustus F. Hawkins (D-CA) and Rep. Parren Mitchell (D-MD). This year, AAAA recognizes Dr. James H. Johnson Jr., the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, for his research and leadership in the areas of community and economic development, the effects of demographic changes on the U.S. workplace, interethnic minority conflict in advanced industrial societies, urban poverty and public policy in urban America, and workforce diversity.
For more information, go to http://www.affirmativeaction.org/. Founded in 1974, the American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA) is a national not-for-profit association of professionals working in the areas of affirmative action, equal opportunity, and diversity. AAAA helps its members to be more successful and productive in their careers. It also promotes understanding and advocacy of affirmative action to enhance access and equality in employment, economic and educational opportunities.
888 16th Street, NW, Suite 800 * Washington, D.C. 20006 *202-349-9855 ex 1857 *800-252-8952 * Fax: 202-355-1399 * http://www.affirmativeaction.org/

Humanitarian award given to two at Compass

Two Compass Group North America officials will receive the Cesar Estrada Chavez Award for improving the working conditions of Latino, Mayan Indian and Haitian immigrants.

Charlotte Business Journal
Thursday, June 17, 2010, 2:45pm EDT Modified: Thursday, June 17, 2010, 4:42pm

The Cesar Estrada Chavez Award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated leadership in support of workers' rights and humanitarian issues.
The American Association for Affirmative Action will honor Rick Stone and Cheryl Queen at the Washington, DC-based organization’s Access, Equity and Diversity Summit , June 30 – July 1at the Raleigh Marriott City Center.
Stone is the vice president of sustainability for Foodbuy LLC, the Charlotte-based company's purchasing arm. Queen is vice president for corporate communications.
The pair partnered with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers after receiving e-mails from the activist group detailing the plight of tomato harvesters in South Florida. Stone and Queen developed a purchasing agreement that set a standard for the industry.
In September, the food-service company pledged to pay an additional 1.5 cents per pound for all tomatoes bought from from Florida annually, with one cent per pound dedicated to go from the supplier directly to the workers.

Full Story: http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/blog/going_green/2010/06/humanitarian_award_given_to_two_at_compass.html?t=printable

RiseSmart Named ‘Champion of Diversity’ by American Association for Affirmative Action



RiseSmart Named ‘Champion of Diversity’ by American Association for Affirmative Action

Premier provider of next-generation outplacement and recruitment process outsourcing solutions praised for diversity in its corporate culture and business approach.

San Jose, CA (Vocus) June 17, 2010 -- RiseSmart, a leading provider of next-generation outplacement (http://www.transitionconcierge.com/) and recruitment process outsourcing (http://www.recruitconcierge.com/) solutions, announced it will receive the Champion of Diversity Award from the American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA), an organization of HR professionals managing equal opportunity, diversity and affirmative action programs.
“We are honored and humbled by this award,” said Sanjay Sathe, founder and CEO of RiseSmart. “We believe that diversity makes companies stronger, which is why we strive for it in our own organization and encourage it in others.”
The Champion of Diversity Award is given to an organization or corporation that has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to AAAA’s mission of fostering diversity and equal opportunity in the workplace.
The award will be presented to RiseSmart on July 1st at the group’s upcoming Access, Equity and Diversity Summit and Annual Meeting in Raleigh, N.C. Other honorees include Compass Group, which works to increase the wages and improve the working conditions of Latino, Mayan Indian and Haitian immigrants working in low-wage jobs throughout Florida; and the “Greensboro Four,” for their history-making sit-in at a Woolworth’s in Greensboro, N.C., in 1960.
"RiseSmart takes extraordinary efforts to ensure that everyone, regardless of culture, language, race and socio-economic standing, has an opportunity to compete for a job,” said AAAA President ReNee S. Dunman. “The company provides a multi-lingual workforce of placement specialists, and ensures that computer access is not a barrier to obtaining information about employment possibilities.” Ms. Dunman added, “Promoting access and removing the barriers to equal opportunity are the essence of affirmative action and inclusion.”
RiseSmart’s Transition Concierge™, a full-service outplacement solution focused on delivering results to both employers and employees, helps people of diverse backgrounds, ethnicities, ages, genders, and economic situations find new positions after being laid off. RiseSmart’s Transition Specialists speak a variety of languages to serve workers from all backgrounds. Additionally, the high-tech company can operate in low-tech ways such as phone and postal mail for those who are not as computer-literate or who have a lack of Internet access. The company offers affordable services that enable employers to provide outplacement benefits to their entire workforce.
About AAAA
Founded in 1974, the American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA) is a national not-for-profit association of professionals working in the areas of affirmative action, equal opportunity, and diversity. AAAA helps its members to be more successful and productive in their careers. It also promotes understanding and advocacy of affirmative action to enhance access and equality in employment, economic and educational opportunities. For more information, go to http://www.affirmativeaction.org/.
About RiseSmart
RiseSmart provides the next-generation outplacement (http://www.transitionconcierge.com/) and recruitment process outsourcing (http://www.risesmart.com/recruitconcierge.php) solutions. The company leverages a common technology platform, proven methodologies, and one-on-one support to help employers with their workforce strategy, and displaced employees with their career strategy. RiseSmart drives significant ROI to organizations by offering affordable pricing, reducing severance costs and unemployment taxes for outplacement services and reducing cycle time and cost of hire for recruiting services. For more information, visit http://www.risesmart.com/.
Contacts:
Scott Baradell
RiseSmart
972.235.3439
http://www.risesmart.com/
RiseSmart, Transition Concierge, Recruit Concierge, Talent Assurance, Job Assurance, SmartConsult, and Transitioning Talent. Changing Lives. are trademarks of RiseSmart, Inc. Any other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

###

We Have a Black President, But That Doesn't Resolve the Deep Racism Built into the American Psyche

AlterNet
AlterNet / By Tim Wise

By Tim Wise, AlterNet
Posted on June 17, 2010,
Printed on June 17, 2010
http://www.alternet.org/story/147204/

It was summer 2004 when most of us first became familiar with Barack Obama. Then an Illinois state senator, the U.S. senate candidate delivered the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Boston: the first of his many now-famous orations on a national stage. Therein he delivered several applause lines, but none were as big as when he proclaimed: "There's not a black America and a white America and Latino America and Asian America; there's the United States of America." Though one might welcome such a statement were it offered in the future and aspirational tense -- as a heartfelt plea for true equality -- Obama proclaimed it in the descriptive and present tense. In so doing he traded intellectual honesty for easy and predictable ovation. After all, 2004 was the same year that research from MIT and the University of Chicago found that job applicants with "white" names were 50 percent more likely to be called back for an interview than those with "black" names, even when all their qualifications were indistinguishable. And with black and brown unemployment standing at double the white rate, even as the new upstart from Chicago poured forth rhetoric professing national unity (and with the median white family possessing 8-10 times the net worth of the median black or Latino family), it should have been apparent that Obama was engaged in political science fiction rather than the description of sociological truth.

Full Story: http://www.alternet.org/story/147204/we_have_a_black_president%2C_but_that_doesn%27t_resolve_the_deep_racism_built_into_the_american_psyche

Harvard Law Women Opt Out

The Careerist
Vivia Chen
June 15, 2010

Women seeking work/life balance are getting their faces slapped with cold water these days. Last week in Texas Lawyer, Andrews Kurth partner Kathleen Wu warned law school graduates not to "get their hearts set on having it all." Wu calls law practice "demanding--exceedingly so. It is next to impossible to balance a full-time legal career with marriage, children, and regular trips to the gym."
Wu, a 1985 law school graduate, says it's possible to have family and career but that it will entail "sacrifices." She ultimately passes the torch to younger lawyers to push for greater life balance.
So how are some of the younger women doing on this front? Angie Kim, a 1993 graduate of Harvard Law School, gives us a hint in Slate ("The Mommy Track Turns 21"), and the news is sobering.

Full Story: http://thecareerist.typepad.com/thecareerist/2010/06/work-life-reality-.html

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

On 47th Anniversary, the Equal Pay Act Must Finally Live Up to its Name

The Huffington Post
Linda Meric
Executive Director of 9to5,
National Association of Working Women
Posted: June 10, 2010 12:00 PM

Imagine for a moment that you work in a department with three employees: one African-American, one Caucasian and one Latina. One day, someone new is hired.
Imagine discovering that this new hire is to be paid much more than any of you; even more than the Latina, who has been employed there for 14 years. Imagine your outrage; especially since the only difference is that all of you are women -- and the new hire is a man.
This story, from a Denver woman who now works in the financial industry, might be shocking to those of us who believe in equity and fairness, but it's not unique.
All over this country, similar stories play out, most anonymous and a few now famous -- like that of Lilly Ledbetter, who worked 20 years at a Goodyear plant in Alabama before learning that the men who performed the same job as she had been earning more all along.
It's time that pay discrimination end and the pay gap close in this country -- and there is something we all can do about it right now! Push the U.S. Senate to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act.

Full Story: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/linda-meric/on-47th-anniversary-the-e_b_603228.html

Minorities and the Recession-Era College Enrollment Boom

Pew Research Center Publications
by Richard Fry, Pew Research Center
June 16, 2010

Executive Summary

The recession-era boom in the size of freshman classes at four-year colleges, community colleges and trade schools has been driven largely by a sharp increase in minority student enrollment, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of new data from the U.S. Department of Education.
Freshman enrollment at the nation's 6,100 post-secondary institutions surged by 144,000 students from the fall of 2007 to the fall of 2008. This 6% increase was the largest in 40 years1, and almost three-quarters of it came from minority freshman enrollment growth.
From 2007 to 2008 (the first year of the recession), the freshman enrollment of Hispanics at post-secondary institutions grew by 15%, of blacks by 8%, of Asians by 6% and of whites by 3%.
Some of this minority enrollment surge is a simple byproduct of demographic change. In a nation whose population of youths is far more diverse than its population of adults, each new year brings a slightly larger share of minority teenagers into the pool of potential college freshmen. In addition, the first year of the recession was a time when young Hispanics, in particular, were completing high school at record rates. According to Census Bureau surveys, the Hispanic high school completion rate reached an all-time high in October 2008 at 70%.2 This was up 2.5 percentage points over October 2007 -- a larger increase than for any other racial or ethnic group.
Minority college students tend to be clustered more at community colleges and trade schools than at four-year colleges. Even so, the minority freshman enrollment spike from 2007 to 2008 occurred at all basic levels of post-secondary education.

Continue reading the full report at pewsocialtrends.org.
Full Executive Summary: http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1629/recession-era-increase-post-secondary-minority-enrollment

Monday, June 14, 2010

Breaking! Kagan Memos Reveal Nothing Shocking!

Care2Make a Difference Blog
posted by: Jessica Pieklo 7 hours ago

With confirmation hearings set to begin on June 28, and some 90,000 pages of papers released involving Kagan's work in the law, Senate Republicans are grasping for anything they can to paint Kagan as a leftist ideologue. The problem for those Republicans though is that Kagan is nothing of the sort.What the papers illustrate is Kagan's thinking as a pragmatist and a centrist. Take for example a 1997 memo on an affirmative action case, authored by Kagan when she was a presidential assistant for domestic policy. A New Jersey school district, when given the decision of firing two equally qualified teachers chose to fire the white teacher over the black one and defended the decision based on the grounds that it was part of an overall effort at maintaining diversity in the workplace.

Full Story: http://www.care2.com/causes/politics/blog/breaking-kagan-memos-reveal-nothing-shocking/

Diversity of a Different Color

Workforce Management
Initiatives have shifted from their roots in equal opportunity for workers toward a focus on marketing goals and accessing diverse markets. But this new model may not survive stepped-up government enforcement and budget cuts threatening programs with unproven results. By Fay Hansen
June 2010

Bank of America’s award-winning diversity program includes executive and regional inclusion councils, affinity groups and diversity networks. In February 2010, the bank was slapped with a $60 million racial discrimination lawsuit. The complaint alleges that the bank’s “apartheid system of business allocation” systematically segregates black employees into jobs that keep them away from wealthy white clients and creates vast inequalities in pay and career opportunities for black employees.
After two decades of corporate diversity programs, rampant racial discrimination in hiring, promotions and wages is still evident in comprehensive data produced by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and other statistical sources. The number of racial harassment charges reported to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has doubled over the same period.
Since their inception in an era of lax federal enforcement, diversity programs have steadily abandoned the hard world of racial discrimination and slipped into the softer realm of “inclusion” initiatives aimed at boosting engagement and productivity across the entire employee population. Program objectives have shifted away from their equal opportunity origins and toward marketing goals. In the context of this shift, the short-lived quest for better diversity metrics and return-on-investment calculations has largely disintegrated into a collection of surveys about employee engagement and customer satisfaction.

Full Story: http://www.workforce.com/section/03/feature/27/21/16/index.html

Harley Davidson Dealership to Pay $55,000 to Settle EEOC Sex Discrimination and Retaliation Suit

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Dudley Perkins Fired Woman for Protesting Gender Bias, Federal Agency Charged
PRESS RELEASE
6-7-10

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — The Dudley Perkins Company, the country’s oldest Harley Davidson motorcycle dealership, will pay $55,000 and furnish other relief to settle a sex discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.
The EEOC’s suit had charged that the San Francisco-based company refused to let a female employee, Bowen Dean, work as a mechanic, while hiring less qualified men. Further, the EEOC said, Dudley Perkins fired her after she filed an EEOC sex discrimination charge. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (Case No. C-08-4552-CW) after first attempting to reach a voluntary pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.
Through the consent decree settling the suit, the court ordered that Dudley Perkins revise its equal employment policy and complaint procedure; train its staff every year about sex discrimination and retaliation; post a notice stating the terms of the decree and how to complain about discrimination; include in its advertising a statement affirming its commitment not to discriminate based on sex; and report its hiring decisions to the EEOC for the decree’s two-year term. In addition, the company will pay Dean $55,000 as monetary damages.
“Breaking into jobs in non-traditional fields continues to be a challenge for women, and despite the prohibitions on sex discrimination written into federal law in 1964, some sex segregation in employment continues,” said EEOC San Francisco Regional Attorney William R. Tamayo. “This settlement will help the motorcycle industry take a step forward.”
EEOC San Francisco District Director Michael Baldonado added, “Traditionally male occupations generally pay more than fields which are traditionally female, and women continue to be excluded from those positions all too often. Working in a non-traditional field is not easy, and we encourage women who believe they are experiencing discrimination to come to the EEOC for assistance.”
According to its website, http://dpchd.com, Dudley Perkins is a full-service Harley Davidson dealership, offering motorcycle sales, parts and accessories, and service since 1914. In addition to its dealership in South San Francisco, the company offers Harley clothing and accessories for sale at its Fisherman’s Wharf retail store.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.

http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/6-7-10.cfm

White House Launches Celebration Of 20th Anniversary Of Americans With Disabilities Act

Posted by Kareem Dale on June 08, 2010 at 02:40 PM EDT

Sunday night, Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to President Obama, kicked off the President’s and White House’s celebration of the 20th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act while delivering remarks to over 2,000 people from around the World at the VSA International Festival at the Kennedy Center. Valerie’s remarks, which you can find below, noted the significance of this historic landmark civil rights legislation, highlighted some of the President’s initiatives thus far related to people with disabilities and previewed that senior administration officials will be commemorating this historic anniversary in the weeks to come with new policies and events.
So, stay tuned for more announcements and information in the upcoming weeks.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2010/06/08/white-house-launches-celebration-20th-anniversary-americans-with-disabilities-act

Statement of US Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis on 47th anniversary of Equal Pay Act

US Department of Labor News Release
OPA News Release: [06/10/2010]Contact Name: Jaime Zapata
Phone Number: (202) 693-4676
Release Number: 10-0826-NAT

Statement of US Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis on 47th anniversary of Equal Pay Act

WASHINGTON — In observance of the 47th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act, Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis today released the following statement:
"Forty-seven years ago today, President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act into law. As he put pen to paper, women were being paid 59 cents for every dollar earned by men. That was almost half a century ago.
"Today, pay parity remains far from a reality for women. This is just unacceptable.
"America's mothers, sisters and daughters now make up nearly half of the nation's workforce, and their families depend on their wages. That is especially true in the face of a difficult employment situation. Pay inequity disregards the incredible contributions made by working women. It also punishes working families and hinders our economic recovery.
"This administration has taken decisive steps to end the problem. In fact, the very first bill signed into law by President Obama was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which restored the right for women who face wage discrimination during their careers to seek their rightful pay. The president also created the National Equal Pay Enforcement Task Force, which brings together federal agencies — including the Department of Labor — to improve the enforcement of equal pay laws. And DOL's Women's Bureau is conducting research and analysis to provide technical assistance while building partnerships that will help narrow the wage gap.
"These and other efforts at the federal level are critical to making pay equity a reality, but much more needs to be done. Women should not be underpaid, and this administration will do everything within its power to ensure they are not made to wait for equality in pay a moment longer."

http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/opa/OPA20100826.htm

Justice Department Settles Employment Discrimination Suit Against John Jay College

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Justice Department Settles Employment Discrimination Suit Against John Jay College

WASHINGTON – The Justice Department announced today that John Jay College, a New York City public college in the City University of New York (CUNY) system, has agreed to pay $23,260.00 in civil penalties and $10,072.23 in back pay to a former employee in order to settle a lawsuit filed by the Justice Department on April 15, 2010. The lawsuit alleged that John Jay College engaged in a pattern or practice of citizenship status discrimination by requesting documents issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from non-U.S. citizens, but not from U.S. citizens, during the employment eligibility verification Form I-9 process.
As part of the settlement, John Jay has also agreed to train its recruitment personnel on their responsibilities not to discriminate, implement a policy prohibiting discrimination on the basis of citizenship status, and provide periodic reports to the Department of Justice for three years.
The Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) in the Civil Rights Division, which conducted the investigation in this matter, will continue to monitor John Jay College to ensure compliance with the settlement agreement. OSC is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), which protect U.S. citizens and certain work-authorized individuals from citizenship status discrimination. The INA also protects all work-authorized individuals from national origin discrimination, over-documentation in the employment eligibility verification process, and retaliation.
"All workers authorized to work in the United States have the right to look for a job without encountering discrimination because of their immigration status or national origin," said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. "We are pleased to have reached the settlement with John Jay College, and look forward to continuing to work with all employers, both public and private, to educate them about the protections and obligations under the law."
For more information about protections against employment discrimination under the immigration laws, call 1-800-255-7688 (OSC’s worker hotline) (1-800-237-2525, TDD for hearing impaired), 1-800-255-8255 (OSC’s employer hotline) (1-800-362-2735, TDD for hearing impaired), or 202-616-5594. Email osccrt@usdoj.gov, or visit the website at http://www.usdoj/gov/crt/osc.
10-591
Civil Rights Division
http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2010/May/10-crt-591.html

Friday, June 11, 2010

US Department of Labor settles hiring discrimination case with The Wackenhut Corp. in Aurora, Colo.

News Release
OFCCP News Release: [06/09/2010]Contact Name: Rich Kulczewski
Phone Number: (303) 844-1302
Release Number: 10-0736-DEN

US Department of Labor settles hiring discrimination case with The Wackenhut Corp. in Aurora, Colo.
Company agrees to pay $290,000 to 446 African-American job applicants

DENVER — The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs has announced that The Wackenhut Corp., doing business as G4S Wackenhut, has entered into a consent decree to settle findings of hiring discrimination at its Aurora, Colo., facility. The consent decree settles OFCCP's allegations that Wackenhut engaged in hiring discrimination against 446 rejected African-American applicants for the position of traditional security officer for a two-year period. Wackenhut is headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
"The department is committed to ensuring that federal contractors and subcontractors hire, promote and compensate their employees fairly, without respect to their race, gender, ethnicity, disability, religion or veteran status," said Patricia A. Shiu, director of OFCCP, who is based in Washington, D.C. "This settlement of $290,000 in back pay on behalf of 446 African-Americans should put all federal contractors on notice that the Labor Department is serious about eliminating systemic discrimination."
OFCCP investigators found that the company engaged in hiring discrimination against African-Americans from Jan. 1, 2002, through Dec. 31, 2003. Under the terms of the consent decree and order, filed with the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Administrative Law Judges, Wackenhut will pay a total of $290,000 in back pay and interest to the 446 rejected African-American applicants and will hire 41 of the applicants into traditional security officer positions. The company also agreed to undertake extensive self-monitoring measures to ensure that all hiring practices fully comply with the law and will immediately correct any discriminatory practice. In addition, Wackenhut will ensure compliance with Executive Order 11246 recordkeeping requirements.
"We strongly encourage other employers to take proactive steps to come into compliance with the law to prevent workplace discrimination," said Melissa Speer, OFCCP acting director of OFCCP's Southwest and Rocky Mountain Regions, who is located in Dallas.
OFCCP, an agency of the U.S. Department of Labor, enforces Executive Order 11246, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 that prohibit employment discrimination by federal contractors. The agency monitors federal contractors to ensure that they provide equal employment opportunities without regard to race, gender, color, religion, national origin, disability or veteran status.

http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/ofccp/ofccp20100736.htm

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Taking Diversity to the Next Level

Diverse Issues in Higher Education
by Reginald Stuart , June 9, 2010

When Colgate University decided a few years ago to recast its diversity efforts, it joined a small, but growing, number of schools across the country in taking a new approach to a decades-old challenge of how best to make their schools more appealing to people from all walks of life and more compelling to employers as a good place to recruit
Colgate, a midsize liberal arts college in northwestern New York state, created a high-ranking diversity post with an ambitious mandate to help expand the school’s approach to diversity. It would embrace recruitment, enrollment and retention of students; development and retention of staff; long-term planning; academic programs; and internal and community relations. It would be quite a leap from historical efforts largely run at department levels by individuals with less authority.

Full Story: http://diverseeducation.com/article/13865/taking-diversity-to-the-next-level.html

Frank L. Matthews, co-founder of Diverse: Issues In Higher Education, will moderate an American Association of Affirmative Action panel titled, “Maintaining Diversity in a Time of Downsizing," on June 30 in Raleigh, N.C.

Low-Income Young Adults are the New Face of the College-Going Population

Institute for Higher Education Policy
CONTACT
Tia T. Gordon
TTG+Partners
202 372 7204
tgordon@ttgpartners.com

Low-Income Young Adults are the New Face of the College-Going Population
New Data Show Increased College Opportunity for Poor Youth, But Getting Out of Poverty Remains Elusive

Washington, D.C., June 9, 2010—At a time when President Obama has declared that “in the 21st century, the best anti-poverty program around is a world-class education,”* the nation's 35.2 million young adults are increasingly seeking the social and economic benefits experienced only through postsecondary education. In fact, nearly 60 percent of young adults from low-income backgrounds had attended, or earned a credential from a postsecondary institution in 2008. However, despite the high levels of engagement, one in 10 impoverished young adults who had earned a college degree failed to immediately transcend the poverty threshold.
The new brief, A Portrait of Low-Income Young Adults in Education, is the first of a new publication series called “Portraits” being launched today by the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP). The paper draws from the most recent national data to describe the population of low-income young adults—between ages 18 and 26 and whose total household income is near or below the federal poverty level—and situates them in the context of national college completion goals. It specifically outlines the demographic characteristics of low-income young adults while providing a brief overview of their pre-college and degree attainment trends.
SNAPSHOT OF LOW-INCOME YOUNG ADULTS AND THEIR EDUCATIONAL EXPERIENCES Pre-College
In 2008, 44 percent of all young adults in the United States were from a low-income background. In terms of their highest level of education, one out of four young adults in poverty had earned a high school diploma or its equivalent (GED), while 18 percent left high school without attaining a diploma.Differences by Race/Ethnicity
Young Black, Hispanic, and Native American students from low-income backgrounds represented larger shares of high school non-completers than Whites or Asians, which significantly decreased the proportion of the former who were able to enter postsecondary education in the traditional way.
Despite lagging behind similar Whites and Asians, the proportion of low-income young Black and Hispanic adults who have some postsecondary education but no degree has been increasing at a faster rate than their White and Asian counterparts. Between 2000 and 2008, the proportion of low-income young adults who have some postsecondary education experience increased by 5 percent for Blacks and 8 percent for Hispanics, compared to 3 percent for Whites and 2 percent for Asians. Degree Attainment
White students from low-income backgrounds were twice as likely as their Black and Hispanic counterparts to attain a postsecondary credential (14 percent vs. 6 percent and 7 percent, respectively) but remain poor.
"While it was surprising to learn low-income young adults are entering postsecondary education in increased numbers comparable to other students, it was equally astonishing to discover this population continues to struggle with earning a living wage even after obtaining their hard earned credentials," said IHEP President Michelle Asha Cooper, Ph.D. "These students already face considerable barriers on their path to earn a postsecondary degree, so it would certainly benefit them the most to take full advantage of improved income outcomes."
Subsequent Portraits briefs will explore potential causes for these findings by examining low-income young adults’ educational aspirations and academic preparation, movement in and between institutions, financial aid and debt burdens and, ultimately, educational outcomes.
The publication series is part of IHEP’s “Changing the Debate” initiative, which is set to bring timely, thought-provoking, and data-driven research and promising interventions to the policy debate. Supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the project findings will contribute to the national discussion about how economic opportunities may not be immediately felt among disadvantaged, and largely understudied, student populations simply by increasing degree completion. For more information about the Portraits series or to download a free copy of the A Portrait of Low-Income Young Adults in Education brief, please visit IHEP’s Web site at www.ihep.org.
*Comments taken from President Obama’s “State of the Union” address delivered on Jan. 27, 2010.
About the Institute for Higher Education Policy--->
The Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) is an independent, nonprofit organization that is dedicated to increasing access and success in postsecondary education around the world. Established in 1993, the Washington, D.C.-based organization uses unique research and innovative programs to inform key decision makers who shape public policy and support economic and social development. IHEP’s web site, www.Ihep.org, features an expansive collection of higher education information available free of charge and provides access to some of the most respected professionals in the fields of public policy and research.
About the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation--->Guided by the belief that every life has equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people’s health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, it seeks to ensure that all people—especially those with the fewest resources—have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life. Based in Seattle, the foundation is led by CEO Patty Stonesifer and Co-Chair William H. Gates Sr., under the direction of Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett.
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http://www.ihep.org/press-room/news_release-detail.cfm?id=184

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Four Types of Training That Should Never Be Cut

Workforce Management
The recession has put employers under attack from employees and government enforcement agencies, making four kinds of training essential. This article describes why the four are vital, and offers return-on-investment arguments for each. By Lynn D. Lieber
January 2010

Often one of the first line items to be cut from HR budgets is training, which can be perceived by high-level executives as “a good thing to do” but nonessential to their organizations in these challenging financial times. In reality, workforce training has never been more important, and it provides a stronger-than-ever return on investment.
The recession has put employers under attack by employees government enforcement agencies. Consider the following facts:
• From 2007 to the end of 2008, employment claims filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission increased by 14.5 percent, from 83,000 to 95,000.
• In 2008, retaliation claims filed with the EEOC jumped 22 percent, from 27,000 to 33,000 claims.
• The EEOC just hired 170 new investigators for intake and investigation purposes.
• Corporate counsel reported significant rises in employment disputes in the past year, with discrimination suits rising by 11 percent.
• The Department of Labor recently added of 250 new wage-and-hour field investigators—a staff increase of more than a third—along with additional new staff in the department’s Office of the Solicitor.
• In December 2008, Wal-Mart agreed to pay as much as $640 million to resolve 63 class-action lawsuits involving wage-and-hour violations across the nation.
In light of such statistics, there are four types of training that should never be cut. These programs—essential for most workforces— are training in the prevention of unlawful harassment and discrimination, prevention of workplace violence, prevention of wage-and-hour law violations and adherence to the organization’s code of conduct. There are sound return-on-investment arguments for each one.
1. Training to prevent discrimination and harassment The EEOC charge numbers cited above represent only the tip of the iceberg. They do not include harassment and discrimination charges filed with state enforcement agencies, in state courts or those related to conflicts that settle before the charges are formally filed.
In the event of a layoff, employees who are terminated might perceive that they were targeted for belonging to one of the legally protected categories, such as age, race, gender or national origin. Employees who haven’t been laid off might view filing a harassment or discrimination claim as “job security,” falsely believing that such a claim makes it impossible for an employer to terminate their employment.
The return on investment
Many courts have held that regular—generally, that means annual—harassment prevention training allows an employer to establish an affirmative defense to avoid liability in cases where the allegedly aggrieved employee has not suffered any tangible job detriment, such as a demotion or termination. (If there is a tangible employment action, such as a termination, this affirmative defense is not available.)

Full Story: http://www.workforce.com/archive/feature/26/92/03/index.php
RGJ.com
By Lenita Powers • lpowers@rgj.com • June 5, 2010

For the first time, tenured faculty at Nevada's public colleges and universities could have their pay cut by up to 6 percent if the Legislature decides to cut the pay of state employees, the Board of Regents decided Friday.

Meeting in Reno, the regents voted unanimously to change the board's code to allow it to reduce the pay of professional employees, including tenured faculty, without having to declare a financial emergency.
The change provides the board with another option to deal with future state budget cuts.

Full Story: http://www.rgj.com/article/20100605/NEWS/6050348/1321/news

National Denture Provider to Pay $150,000 to Settle EEOC Sex and Race Harassment Suit

US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
PRESS RELEASE
6-2-10
Federal Agency Charged Affiliated Dentist Harassed Female Assistants

BOSTON – Affordable Care, Inc., a national denture provider, will pay $150,000 and furnish other relief to settle a sex and race discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today. The lawsuit, filed in March 2009 in federal court in Springfield, Mass., charged that Affordable Care violated federal law when its affiliated dentist, Nelson Wood, sexually and racially harassed two female employees.
According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, Kinston, N.C.-based Affordable Care and Nelson Wood, operating as Nelson Wood, DMD, PC, created a sexually and racially hostile work environment for Ariede Mills, who is African American, and Laura Carl, who is white, at its office in West Springfield. The lawsuit alleged that, among other things, Wood referred to women as “whining b-----s,” propositioned Mills for sex, spanked Carl repeatedly on the buttocks, made insulting remarks about blacks, and claimed that he had a relative who was a member of the Ku Klux Klan. Both Mills and Carl complained repeatedly about Wood to Affordable Care, which is headquartered in North Carolina, but the company failed to stop the harassment. The EEOC also charged that Mills was fired in retaliation for her complaints, and that Carl was forced to quit because of the offensive conduct.
The settlement provides $75,000 each to Mills and Carl. In addition to the monetary payments, the consent decree resolving the litigation (Civil Action No. 1:09-cv-10399), approved by Judge Michael Ponsor today, enjoins Affordable Care and Wood from further discriminating on the basis of sex and race; creates an independent EEO coordinator to receive and investigate complaints of discrimination and retaliation at Affordable Care’s dental practices; mandates training on the requirements of anti-discrimination laws; and requires the issuance of a new anti-discrimination policy and the posting of a notice regarding the settlement.
Spencer H. Lewis, Jr., director of the EEOC’s New York District Office, which has jurisdiction over Massachusetts, said, “This case is a reminder that the EEOC will not allow a company like Affordable Care to escape liability for the actions of its affiliated entities when it maintains control over those operations.”
EEOC Senior Trial Attorney Markus L. Penzel in Boston added, “The EEOC is pleased that Affordable Care worked cooperatively with us to resolve this case with minimal litigation. We believe that the relief provided in the consent decree will help prevent what happened to Ms. Mills and Ms. Carl from happening to others in the future.”
On its web site, Affordable Care describes itself as a dental services organization currently supporting over 150 affiliated practices providing Affordable Dentures® in more than 37 states.
The EEOC is the federal government agency responsible for enforcing federal anti-discrimination laws in the workplace. Further information about EEOC is available on the agency’s web site at www.eeoc.gov.
http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/6-2-10.cfm

GE Subsidiary MRA Systems To Pay $130,000 To Settle EEOC Age Discrimination Suit

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
PRESS RELEASE
6-3-10

Aircraft Systems Company Refused to Promote and Retaliated Against 61-Year-Old Employee, Federal Agency Charged
BALTIMORE –Baltimore-based MRA Systems, Inc., a subsidiary of General Electric, will pay $130,000 and provide substantial equitable relief to settle an age discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.
The EEOC charged in its suit that MRA Systems gave Louis Behrendt a lower performance rating, despite his successful job performance, because of his age, 61. The EEOC also alleged that the company failed to assign Behrendt to a position as a Production Control Leader 5 and instead awarded the position, which had greater salary potential, to a younger, less qualified employee. Moreover, the company subjected him to unfair and heightened job scrutiny, gave him poor performance ratings and refused to promote him based on his age and in retaliation for his internal complaints about discrimin­ation, the EEOC charged.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals who are 40 or older when making employment decisions, such as promotions, job assignments and performance ratings. The ADEA also forbids employers from retaliating against individuals who oppose age discrimination. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, Northern District (Civil Action Number 1:08-cv-02499-WDQ) after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement out of court through its conciliation process.
In addition to the monetary relief to Behrendt, the three-year consent decree settling the lawsuit contains significant remedial measures, including enjoining the company from engaging in any employment practice which discriminates on the basis of age and prohibiting any unlawful retaliation. MRA Systems will provide at least two hours of mandatory training on federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination to all managers, supervisors and other employees who participate in the performance evaluation process or assignment decisions at its Maryland facility. The company will also post a notice on the resolution of the lawsuit.
“Age-based stereotypes about the abilities of older workers can result in older employees receiving lower performance ratings, lower compensation and fewer promotional opportunities than younger co-workers,” said EEOC Regional Attorney Debra Lawrence of the EEOC’s Philadelphia District Office, which oversees Pennsylvania, Delaware, West Virginia, Maryland and parts of New Jersey and Ohio. “We appreciate MRA Systems working with EEOC to reach a settlement that, in addition to providing compensation to Mr. Behrendt, is intended to protect all employees at the company’s Maryland facility from being subjected to unfair treatment based on age.”
In Fiscal Year 2009, age-based charges reached a total of 22,778, their second-highest level ever.
In July 2009, the EEOC held a public hearing on age discrimination and barriers to the employment of older workers. Additional information about the hearing can be found on the EEOC’s web site at http://www.eeoc.gov/abouteeoc/meetings/7-15-09/index.html.
According to its web site, www.mras-usa.com, MRA Systems, Inc. is one of the world's leading suppliers of jet engine thrust reversers -- the brakes of a jet engine. The company also produces a variety of specialized structures for major aircraft manufacturers.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the Commission is available at its web site at www.eeoc.gov.

OFCCP Hosts Webinar on NLRA Notification Regulations

Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs

How To Comply With Executive Order 13496
Join us for a Webinar on June 3.

Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/696425736

Under a new Department of Labor regulation published on May 20, 2010, effective June 21, 2010 Federal contractors and their subcontractors are required to post notices informing employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).
These regulations implement Executive Order 13496, signed by President Obama on January 30, 2009, and require federal contractors to agree to post the required employee notice and to agree to insert provisions in their subcontracts that require their subcontractors to post the employee notice as well. The employee notice that must be posted and the contract provisions that must be inserted into Federal contracts and subcontracts can be found at 29 C.F.R. Part 471 Appendix A.
Please join the Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) as we conduct a webinar for Federal contractors and subcontractors to provide them with information about how to comply with this new regulation.
This webinar is approximately 1.5 hours long that includes 30 minutes of Q&A opportunities. We invite you to e-mail us your questions in advance of the webinar.
Register for a session now by clicking a date below:
Thu, Jun 3,2010 2.00PM - 3.30 PM EDT
Thu, Jun 10,2010 2.00 PM - 3.30 PM EDT

Once registered you will receive an email confirming your registration with information you need to join the Webinar.
System Requirements:PC-based attendeesRequired: Windows® 7, Vista, XP, 2003 Server or 2000
Macintosh®-based attendeesRequired: Mac OS® X 10.4.11 (Tiger®) or newer

http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/EO13496_webinar_invitation.htm

OFCCP Issues Notification on Employee Rights under NLRB

Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)
New Employee Notification Requirements for Federal Contractors and Subcontractors

Under Department of Labor regulations, http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2010/pdf/2010-11639.pdf , contractors holding contracts with the Federal government and their subcontractors are required, beginning on June 21, 2010, to post notices informing employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The notice to employees required by the regulations inform employees about their rights under the NLRA to form, join and assist a union and to bargain collectively with their employer; provides examples of unlawful employer and union conduct that interferes with those rights; and indicates how employees can contact the National Labor Relations Board, the Federal agency that enforces those rights, with questions or to file complaints. Contractors that violate the Labor Department's regulations requiring employee notification of these rights may be subject to sanctions, including suspension or cancellation of the contract.
The regulations require Federal contractors:
to post the required employee notice conspicuously in and around their plants and offices so that it is prominent and readily seen by employees who are covered by the NLRA and who engage in contract-related activity;
to post the required notice electronically if they communicate with employees electronically, which requires posting a link to the Department of Labor's website containing the employee notice where they customarily place other electronic notices to employees about their jobs; and
to insert provisions in their subcontracts that require their subcontractors to comply with the same posting requirements as well.
Contractors and subcontractors may obtain the required poster in any of the three ways. The Labor Department will print posters and provide them to Federal contracting departments and agencies for supply to contractors and subcontractors. In addition, contractors and subcontractors can request posters from the field offices of the Labor Department's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/contacts/ofnation2.htm) , or Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) (http://www.dol.gov/olms/contacts/lmskeyp.htm). Finally, contractors and subcontractors can acquire the poster from OLMS' website by downloading it from http://www.olms.dol.gov or by calling (202) 693-0123. Compliance information for contractors and subcontractors can be found at OFCCP's website http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/Contractor_Compliance_presentation.ppt

http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/EO13496_Presentation.htm