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Capitol Correspondence - 09.23.19

GAO Finds Challenges Remain in Nondiscrimination Oversight

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A recent report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) finds that there continue to be challenges in nondiscrimination oversight processes, which has important implications for people with disabilities as they tend to be more vulnerable to employment discrimination.

As written by GAO:

“The Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) face challenges in overseeing compliance by employers and federal contractors with applicable federal equal employment opportunity requirements. In its 2016 report, GAO made six recommendations to OFCCP and in its 2017 report made five additional recommendations to OFCCP and one to EEOC to strengthen program oversight. OFCCP has implemented four recommendations, but seven require additional agency action to be fully implemented, as does the one to EEOC. For example:

  • In 2016, GAO found that OFCCP’s oversight was limited by reliance on contractors’ voluntary compliance with affirmative action plan requirements. OFCCP has taken steps to develop a new web portal for collecting those plans annually, but has not yet obtained Office of Management and Budget approval for the collection or launched the portal. GAO also found OFCCP’s oversight was limited by a lack of timely staff training. OFCCP has taken steps to implement a new training curriculum, but has not yet implemented its new learning management system that will help ensure timely and regular training.


  • In 2017, GAO found that EEOC had not consistently captured information on industry codes, which limits EEOC’s ability to identify trends by industry sector and conduct sector-related analyses. EEOC has not yet completed development of its Employer Master List that will include industry codes. GAO also found that OFCCP’s methodology for identifying equal employment disparities by industry might not accurately identify industries at greatest risk of noncompliance with affirmative action and nondiscrimination requirements. OFCCP has taken steps to develop a new methodology, but needs to further refine it to ensure that it will identify industries at greatest risk”