OFCCP Deputy Director Statement to Congress: Priorities & Focus on Veterans

by Irwin, Carla Thursday, May 19, 2011
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On September 29th, OFCCP Deputy Director Les Jin testified before a subcommittee focusing on federal contractors and subcontractors compliance and OFCCP enforcement of veterans regulations.

The testimony began with an outline of the OFCCP’s three priorities:

1. Strengthening enforcement,

“Director Shiu has worked with our Regional Directors to institute a new protocol that requires OFCCP compliance officers to go on-site to verify how contractors are treating protected veterans and people with disabilities, rather than simply accepting contractors’ self-reporting.”

“In FY 2010 we referred more than 34 cases to the Solicitor of Labor for litigation, more than doubling the amount referred in FY 2009 and tripling the number from FY 2008. We are also making it clear to the contractor community that, in the cases of the worst offenders, we will impose contract-related sanctions…”

2. Implementing a robust regulatory agenda

“We are currently in the process of revising our implementing regulations to strengthen VEVRAA… The notice Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, which is scheduled to be published next winter, would require federal contractors and subcontractors to strengthen affirmative action programs and measure the effectiveness of their equal employment opportunity efforts.”

“In addition, last week, we closed a 60-day period of public comment during which we asked for proposals and comments on how we could strengthen our regulations implementing Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 in order to help people with disabilities obtain good jobs.”

3. Identifying more individual complaints through greater outreach

“Increasing the number of individual complaints we receive and investigate will increase our ability to protect veterans.”

“We are working to develop partnerships with the civil rights, workers’ rights, advocacy and service-providing organizations who serve our protected veterans on a daily basis.”

“So far in FY 2010, OFCCP has hosted 139 outreach events where VEVRAA and Section 503 were the primary topics of discussion.”

“Veterans who work at OFCCP are the ideal liaisons to engage with their fellow servicemen and women, to explain the protections we have to offer and the investigatory and legal resources we can provide.”

The Deputy Director also addressed the Chairwoman’s specific questions regarding monitoring contractor compliance, the VETS-100 report, the Federal Contractor job Listing program, actions DOL takes against non-compliant contractors, if OFCCP received any complaints from veterans and the steps OFCCP has taken since the last appearance before the Subcommittee to improve contractor compliance.