Office of Resolution Management, Diversity & Inclusion (ORMDI)
The Secretary’s Annual EEO, Diversity and Inclusion, No FEAR, and Whistleblower Rights and Protection Policy Statement
VA is committed to ensuring Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), promoting workforce diversity, workplace inclusion, and constructively resolving conflict to sustain a high-performing organization in service to our Nation’s Veterans. VA will vigorously enforce all applicable Federal EEO laws, regulations, executive orders, and management directives to ensure equal opportunity in the workplace for all VA employees and applicants. The Secretary’s Annual EEO, Diversity and Inclusion, No FEAR, and Whistleblower Rights and Protection Policy [PDF] summarizes VA’s EEO, Diversity and Inclusion, Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act (No FEAR), and Whistleblower Rights and Protection policies.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s Compliance Manual on Religious Discrimination addresses Title VII’s prohibition against religious discrimination in employment, including topics such as religious harassment, and workplace accommodation of religious beliefs and practices.
In support of VA Directive 0022: Religious Symbols in VA Facilities [PDF], the Secretary’s Message on Religious Exercise and Liberty in the Workplace [Word]outlines the Department’s stance on issues involving faith in the workplace in alignment with the Attorney General’s guidance, Federal Law Protections for Religious Liberty.
VA Notice 20-03 provides the policy update on Compensatory Time Off for Religious Observances. This notice will be incorporated into VA Handbook 5011, Hours of Duty and Leave.
Public Law 95-341, American Indian Religious Freedom, states that it is the policy of the United States to protect and preserve for American Indians their inherent right of freedom to believe, express, andexercise the traditional religions of the American Indian, Eskimo, Aleut, and Native Hawaiians, including but not limited to access to sites, use and possession of sacred objects, and the freedom to worship through ceremonials and traditional rites.
VA’s Guidance for Language Use by Employees in the Department of Veterans Affairs [PDF]addresses the use of languages other than English in the workplace. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Language Access Plan (LAP) [PDF] ensures equal access to services provided by VA to individuals with limited English proficiency (LEP).
Directive and Handbooks
The following D&I-associated VA Directives and Handbooks are also available on the VA Publications Web page:
- VA Directive 5975, Diversity and Inclusion [PDF]
- VA Handbook 5975.1, Processing Requests for Reasonable Accommodation from Employees and Personal Assistance Services for Applicants with Disabilities [PDF]
- VA Handbook 5975.2, Diversity and Equal Employment Opportunity Program Evaluation [PDF]
- VA Handbook 5975.3, EEO Planning and Barrier Analysis [PDF]
- VA Handbook 5975.4, Transgender Employee Transition Guidance [PDF]
- VA Handbook 5975.5, Special Emphasis Program Management [PDF]
- VA Handbook 5975.6, Compliance Procedures Implementing Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973—Nondiscrimination Based on Disability in Federally Conducted Programs or Activities [PDF]
External References, Regulations
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Equal Pay Act of 1963, Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), Sections 501 and 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Titles I and V of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), and the Civil Rights Act of 1991. Instructions are provided for Federal employees to file a complaint. There is a National Enforcement Plan that identifies priority issues for administrative enforcement and litigation. EEOC also requires that agencies develop Affirmative Employment Programs as directed by Management Directives (MDs).
The Office of Personnel Management(OPM) establishes Federal personnel policy, with updates posted as Federal Register documents.
- Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Title 29, Part 1604 contains guidelines on discrimination based on gender.
- CFR Title 29, Part 1606 contains guidelines on discrimination based on national origin.
- CFR Title 29, Part 1607 contains the Uniform Guidelines of Employee Selection Procedures.
- CFR Title 29, Part 1614 establishes Federal sector EEO.
- CFR Title 29, Subpart 1614.601 requires each agency to establish a system to collect and maintain accurate employment information on the race, national origin, sex, and disability of its employees.
- CFR Title 29, Part 1690 sets forth procedures for the prescribed coordination between the EEOC and other Federal agencies having responsibility for enforcement of statutes, regulations, Executive Orders, and policies that require equal employment opportunity without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, or disability.
- 5 CFR § 213.3102 (t) gives Federal agencies special appointing authority governing employment of individuals with intellectual disabilities (u) and those with severe physical disabilities under Schedule A and excepted appointment.
- 5 CFR § 213.3102 (gg) gives Federal agencies special appointing authority governing persons with psychiatric disabilities.
- 5 CFR § 213.3102 (ll) gives Federal agencies special appointing authority for employment of readers, interpreters, and personal assistants for employees with disabilities.
- 5 CFR § 315.709 authorizes employees with severe physical and intellectual disabilities to convert to competitive status after completion of two years of satisfactory service in their excepted positions.
- 5 CFR, Part 720, Subpart A incorporates the statutory requirements for establishing and conducting an equal opportunity recruitment program consistent with law within the Federal civil service.
- 5 CFR, Part 720, Subpart B establishes the Federal Equal Opportunity Recruitment Program in OPM as a recruiting initiative designed to eliminate less than expected participation of minorities and women in the Federal service.
- 5 CFR, Part 720, Subpart C, and also 38 U.S.C. 4214, establishes the Disabled Veterans Affirmative Action Program in OPM.
The Office of Management and Budget establishes the standards on race and ethnicity to be used by Federal agencies and the U.S. Census:
- Revisions to the Standards for the Classification of Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity, published in the Federal Register on October 30, 1997, defines the categories of race and ethnicity for collecting data for the 2000 Census and for Federal agencies.
The Merit System Protection Board is the guardian of the Federal Government's merit-based system of employment, primarily by hearing and deciding appeals from Federal employees of removals and other major personnel actions. The Board also hears and decides other types of civil service cases, reviews significant actions and regulations of the Office of Personnel Management, and conducts studies of the merit systems.
The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) is an independent federal investigative and prosecutorial agency. Our basic authorities come from three federal statutes, the Civil Service Reform Act, the Whistleblower Protection Act, and the Hatch Act.
External References, Laws and Other Guidance
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 621-634
- American Indian Religious Freedom Act of 1978
- Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq
- Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA)
- Architectural Barriers Act (ABA), 42 U.S.C. § 4151 et seq
- ABA Standards: Entrances, Doors, and Gates
- Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq
- Civil Rights Act of 1991, 42 U.S.C. § 1981(a)
- Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, as amended
- Deborah Sampson Act
- Elijah E. Cummings Federal Employee Antidiscrimination Act
- Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972
- Equal Pay Act of 1963, 29 U.S.C. § 206(d)
- Final Rule on Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
- Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008
- Management Directive 715
- Memorandum on Condemning and Combating Racism, Xenophobia, and Intolerance Against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States
- Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation (No FEAR) Act of 2002
- Older Workers Benefit Protection Act of 1990
- Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978
- Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 791, 793, 794(a) Sections 501, 504, and 508
- The Constitution of the United States
- Revisions to the Standards for the Classification of Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity
External References, Executive Orders
- Executive Order 9981 – Establishing the President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services, 1948
- Executive Order 11246 – Equal Employment Opportunity
- Executive Order 11375 – Amending Executive Order No. 11246,
Relating to Equal Employment Opportunity (adding sex as a protected category) [PDF]
- Executive Order 11478 – Equal Employment Opportunity in the Federal Government
- Executive Order 11625 – Prescribing additional arrangements for developing and coordinating a national program for minority business enterprise
- Executive Order 11701 – Employment of veterans by Federal agencies and Government contractors and subcontractors
- Executive Order 12067 – Providing for coordination of Federal Equal Employment Opportunity programs
- Executive Order 12106 – Transfer of certain equal employment enforcement functions
- Executive Order 12250 – Leadership and Coordination of Nondiscrimination Laws
- Executive Order 13078 – Increasing Employment of Adults with Disabilities
- Executive Order 13087 – Amending EO 11478 to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation in the competitive service of the federal civilian workforce
- Executive Order 13145 – To Prohibit Discrimination in Federal Employment based on Genetic Information
- Executive Order 13152 – Amending EO 11478 to prohibit discrimination based on parental status
- Executive Order 13160 – Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Race, Sex, Color, National Origin, Disability, Religion, Age, Sexual Orientation, and Status as a Parent in Federally Conducted Education and Training Programs
- Executive Order 13163 – Increasing the Opportunity for Individuals with Disabilities to Be Employed in the Federal Government
- Executive Order 13164 – Requiring Federal agencies to Establish Procedures to Facilitate the Provision of Reasonable Accommodation
- Executive Order 13166 – Improving Access to Services for Persons with Limited English Proficiency
- Executive Order 13171 – Hispanic Employment in the Federal Government
- Executive Order 13175 – Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments
- Executive Order 13187 –The President's Disability Employment Partnership Board
- Executive Order 13217 – Community-based Alternatives for Individuals with Disabilities
- Executive Order 13256--President's Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities
- Executive Order 13403 – Amendments to Executive Orders 11030, 13279, 13339, 13381, and 13389, and Revocation of Executive Order 13011
- Executive Order 13518 – Employment of Veterans in the Federal Government
- Executive Order 13548 – Increasing Federal Employment of Individuals with Disabilities
- Executive Order 13562 – Recruiting and Hiring Students and Recent Graduates
- Executive Order 13583 – Establishing a Coordinated Government-wide Initiative to Promote Diversity and Inclusion in the Federal Workforce
- Executive Order 13672 – Further Amendments to Executive Order 11478, Equal Employment Opportunity in the Federal Government, and Executive Order 11246, Equal Employment Opportunity
- Executive Order 13899 – Combating Anti-Semitism
- Executive Order 13985 - Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government
- Executive Order 13988 - Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation
- Executive Order 14020 – Establishment of the White House Gender Policy Council
- Executive Order 14031 – Advancing Equity, Justice, and Opportunity for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders
- Executive Order 14035 – Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility in the Federal Workforce
- Executive Order 14041 - White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity Through Historically Black Colleges and Universities
- Executive Order 14045: White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Hispanics
- Executive Order 14048 - Continuance or Reestablishment of Certain Federal Advisory Committees and Amendments to Other Executive Orders
- Executive Order 14049 - White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Native Americans and Strengthening Tribal Colleges and Universities Affinity Organizations
- Executive Order 14050 - White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Black Americans
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