Equal Employment Opportunity Principles

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Laws

29 Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.) Part 1614

The regulations governing the processing of Federal sector discrimination complaints are contained inTitle 29 C.F.R., Part 1614. These regulations also define the role of the counselors, managers, supervisors, and witnesses.

Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) of 1967, as amended

The ADEA prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of age (40 years or older). Unlike Title VII and the Rehabilitation Act, the ADEA allows persons claiming age discrimination to go directly to court without going through an agency’s administrative complaint procedures. If, however, a complainant chooses to file an administrative complaint, (s)he must exhaust administrative remedies before proceeding to court. As with Title VII complaints, a complainant exhausts administrative remedies 180 days after filing a formal complaint or 180 days after filing an appeal with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) if the EEOC has not issued a decision. Read the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) of 1967, as amended and Facts About Age Discrimination.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Rehabilitation Act of 2008

On September 25, 2008, the President signed the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (“ADA Amendments Act” or “Act”). The Act makes important changes to the definition of the term “disability” by rejecting the holdings in several Supreme Court decisions and portions of EEOC’s ADA regulations. Read the Notice Concerning The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments Act Of 2008.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Rehabilitation Act of 1973

These laws prohibit discrimination against qualified people with disabilities who are able to perform the essential functions of the job. The law also requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to assist individuals in performing their jobs unless the agency can demonstrate that the accommodations would impose an undue hardship on the operation of its program. Read theAmericans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Sections 501 and 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and other ADA regulations and technical assistance materials.

Fair Labor Standards Act of 1958, as amended (Equal Pay Act of 1963 – [EPA])

The Equal Pay Act prohibits sex-based wage discrimination. It prohibits Federal agencies from paying employees of one sex lower wages than those of the opposite sex for performing substantially equal work. Substantially equal work means that the jobs require equal skills, effort, and responsibility, and that the jobs are performed under similar working conditions. Read the Equal Pay Act of 1963.

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – Prohibition Against National Origin Discrimination Affecting Limited English Proficient Persons

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000d, et seq. and its implementing regulations provide that no person shall be subjected to discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin under any program or activity that receives federal financial assistance. Language for LEP individuals can be a barrier to accessing important benefits or services, understanding and exercising important rights, complying with applicable responsibilities, or understanding other information provided by federally funded programs and activities. Read Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended

Title VII prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. It also prohibits reprisal or retaliation for participating in the discrimination complaints process or for opposing any unlawful employment practice under Title VII. Read Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

See an Overview of Federal Equal Employnment Opportunity (EEO) Laws.

Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2012 (WPEA)

We protect the rights of whistleblowers:

The Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2012 (WPEA) was signed into law by President Obama on November 27, 2012. The law strengthens the protections for federal employees who disclose evidence of waste, fraud, or abuse. The WPEA also requires that any non-disclosure policy, form, or agreement (NDA) include the statement copied below, and provides that NDAs executed without the language may be enforced as long as agencies give employees notice of the statement. This communication serves as that notice to employees.

As a NARA employee, you may have been required to sign an NDA to access classified or other information. You should read this statement as if it were incorporated into any non-disclosure policy, form, or agreement you have signed.

These provisions are consistent with and do not supersede, conflict with, or otherwise alter the employee obligations, rights, or liabilities created by existing statute or Executive order relating to (1) classified information, (2) communications to Congress, (3) the reporting to an Inspector General of a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety, or (4) any other whistleblower protection. The definitions, requirements, obligations, rights, sanctions, and liabilities created by controlling Executive orders and statutory provisions are incorporated into this agreement and are controlling.

Employees are reminded that reporting evidence of waste, fraud, or abuse involving classified information or classified programs must continue to be made consistent with established rules and procedures designed to protect classified information.

The following list of Executive orders and statutory provisions are controlling in the case of any conflict with an agency NDA:

  • Executive Order No. 13526;
  • Section 7211 of Title 5, United States Code (governing disclosures to Congress);
  • Section 1034 of Title 10, United States Code, as amended by the Military Whistleblower Protection Act (governing disclosure to Congress by members of the military);
  • Section 2302(b)(8) of Title 5, United States Code, as amended by the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 (governing disclosures of illegality, waste, fraud, abuse of public health or safety threats);
  • Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (50 U.S.C. 421 et seq.) ( governing disclosures that could expose confidential Government agents);
  • The statutes which protect against disclosure that may compromise the national security, including sections 641, 793, 794, 798, and 952 of title 18, United States Code, and
  • Section 4(b) of the Subversive Activities Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. 783(b)).

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