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OFCCP Issues Two New Directives on Religious Freedom Protections and New Focused Reviews


Focused reviews, starting in FY 2019, will involve an onsite review of hiring, compensation, accommodation requests, policies, and interviews

Acting Director Craig Leen issued two new policy directives on August 10, 2018: (1) protecting the rights of religion-exercising organizations and individuals and (2) more comprehensive focused reviews of contractor compliance.

Directive 2018-03: Executive Order 11246 Sec 204(c), religious exemption is “to incorporate recent developments in the law regarding religion-exercising organizations and individuals.” It instructs OFCCP staff to take into account recent Supreme Court decisions and White House Executive Orders which protect religious freedom and offer broad anti-discrimination protections. OFCCP staff will be directed to use these legal developments when providing compliance assistance, processing complaints, and enforcing E.O. 11246.

Directive 2018-04: Focused reviews of contractor compliance with Executive Order 11246 (E.O.), as amended; Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 503), as amended; and Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 (VEVRAA), as amended is “to direct that a portion of future scheduling lists include focused reviews as to each of the three authorities that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs enforces.” OFCCP will conduct focused reviewed by going onsite and performing a comprehensive review of the particular regulation at issue. Interviews will be conducted with employees affected by policies and the officials responsible for equal opportunity and compliance. Additionally, OFCCP will look to evaluate hiring, compensation, and accommodation requests. The “focused reviews will be selected from the same neutral selection system used to identify and create OFCCP’s supply and service scheduling list.” OFCCP is working on developing a standard protocol for conducting these reviews.

OFCCP News Release

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