On Aug. 3, 2016, Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) Director Patricia A. Shiu spoke to a packed audience at the 34th Annual National Industry Liaison Group (NILG) Conference held in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The OFCCP is the unit of the U.S. Department of Labor responsible for enforcing the special affirmative action rules and regulations that apply to covered federal contractors and subcontractors. NILG, in turn, is a nonprofit organization originally formed for the purpose of improving communications between the OFCCP and covered employers across the country.
Key highlights from Director Shiu’s speech to the NILG conference include the following:
- Shiu noted that over the past seven years, OFCCP has instituted “an aggressive regulatory agenda” above and beyond enforcement, including the expansion of non-discrimination protections for sexual orientation, gender identity, and workers who make certain inquiries about their and others’ pay (i.e., “pay transparency”).
- Shiu noted the expanded reporting requirements for veterans and individuals with disabilities under contractor affirmative action plans, proposed compensation reporting soon to be required (when finalized) as part of annual EEO-1 submissions, and OFCCP’s June 2016 updates to its previous, 1970s-era sex discrimination guidelines.
- Shiu reported that under the Obama administration, OFCCP has conducted 28,811 compliance reviews involving approximately 12 million workers, recovering over $75 million in back pay and other relief.
- Shiu touted OFCCP’s “renewed focus on combating pay discrimination” as part of OFCCP’s overall enforcement efforts, which she claimed “is not going to change any time in the near future.”
- Shiu also advised contractors against submitting affirmative action plan documents, supporting background materials and other requested data to OFCCP “in a piecemeal fashion,” stating emphatically: “Don’t do that.”
Should you have any questions about Director Shiu’s NILG comments or federal affirmative action compliance generally, please contact the author, your McGuireWoods contact, or a member of the firm’s affirmative action or labor and employment teams.