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Office of Resolution Management, Diversity & Inclusion (ORMDI)



The Secretary’s Annual EEO, IDEA, No FEAR, and Whistleblower Rights and Protection Policy Statement
VA is committed to ensuring Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO); promoting inclusion, diversity, equity and access (I*DEA); and constructively resolving conflict to sustain a high-performing organization in service to the 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, I*DEA, No FEAR, and Whistleblower Rights and Protection Policy [PDF] summarizes VA’s EEO, IDEA, 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, and exercise 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.

Language Use
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:

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:

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

External References, Executive Orders

Diversity & Inclusion Section Pages

D&I Home D&I Training Workforce Analysis Policies
D&I in VA Council D&I Excellence Awards Diversity@Work Newsletter Special Emphasis Programs