The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Chairwoman's Introduction

This is our second Annual Performance Report under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993. We have been able to continue our successes from fiscal year 1999. This has been a great accomplishment by all of our dedicated staff in every office throughout the United States.

Since I became Chairwoman of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in October 1998, we have been implementing an innovative agenda to increase the fairness, quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of all aspects of agency operations. We have focused on expanding outreach, education and technical assistance to a broad range of stakeholders to ensure that EEOC is the nation's premier civil rights enforcement agency. In particular, we placed special emphasis on reaching out to small businesses and under-served minority communities to promote understanding and voluntary compliance with the laws enforced by the Commission. Although we sought to prevent discrimination in the first instance, we pursued fair and vigorous enforcement against those who violated workplace anti-discrimination laws.

EEOC has embraced a new vision and work strategy that has won the respect and praise of many who have criticized the agency in the past. The Commission has been on the cutting edge of enforcing the nation's anti-discrimination laws through a dynamic comprehensive enforcement approach. Our accomplishments have been embodied in quality settlements, major conciliations, inventory reduction, mediation, reductions in average processing time, significant trial victories, crucial policy guidance, and constructive rulemaking. In short, our work and impact is being recognized by stakeholders, Congress, the news media, and the general public as a critical element in achieving the American dream of equal opportunity for all.

Under our revised Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years 2000-2005, we have focused our resources and identified measures to continue our significant progress into the new century. This FY 2000 Annual Performance Report is an opportunity to provide our employees, Congress, stakeholders and the public with a concise report of our significant progress during the past fiscal year towards achieving our goals and, ultimately, our mission of eradicating employment discrimination at the workplace.

FISCAL YEAR 2000 KEY ACCOMPLISHMENTS

In fiscal year 2000, the Commission made important progress towards achieving its goals. Some highlights of our key fiscal year 2000 accomplishments include:

MAJOR PROGRAM ACTIVITIES

We continued several major projects and program activities and instituted others that led to our extraordinary successes in fiscal year 2000. In the attached Annual Performance Report our major program activities and accomplishments are described more fully.

Comprehensive Enforcement Program

One of my key initiatives after I became Chairwoman was to improve all components of agency operations in both the private and federal sectors using a Comprehensive Enforcement Program (CEP) strategy. The CEP builds on the success of the Priority Charge Handling Procedures (PCHP) and the National Enforcement Plan, the Commission's strategy for prioritizing its caseload and focusing resources on issues of national significance, respectively. In fiscal year 2000, the first full year of the agency-wide CEP, the Commission utilized the Private Sector CEP to strategically focus agency resources on goals and increase collaboration among front-line functions, from outreach and intake through case resolution. As a result, the CEP has sharply increased charges resolved that deliver relief to charging parties and focused limited litigation resources on the most egregious cases and on cases benefitting multiple charging parties.

There are several key components of the Private Sector CEP:

Under the Federal Sector CEP, the agency significantly expanded its efforts to prevent discrimination as well as reduce the hearings and appeals inventories. Significant achievements in the federal area include the following:

Outreach, Education, and Technical Assistance

The agency's outreach, education and technical assistance efforts are vital components of our work to eradicate employment discrimination. Key accomplishments in this area include:

Task Forces to Improve Enforcement and Outreach Efforts

EEOC created several internal task forces and an initiative to address specific areas of the Commission's responsibilities to improve customer service and enforcement of the laws:

Policy Guidance and Rulemaking

Another important Commission responsibility is to provide guidance to our own employees and the employer and employee-representative communities. Several important policy guidance and rulemaking accomplishments occurred in fiscal year 2000:

CONCLUSION

Our achievements in fiscal year 2000 demonstrate that the agency is working diligently to provide enhanced customer service to all of our stakeholders. Our comprehensive enforcement approach and strategic utilization of resources have allowed us to capitalize on the major progress made in fiscal year 1999 and sustain and build upon our accomplishments in fiscal year 2001.

EEOC will continue to strengthen its enforcement efforts through improvements in customer service to deliver fair, efficient and effective service to the public. Equally important, we aspire to prevent discrimination through outreach and education efforts that promote understanding and voluntary compliance with anti-discrimination laws.

Discrimination in the workplace on account of race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion or disability deprives the nation of the skills and talents needed to sustain economic growth and deprives families of the quality of life they deserve. EEOC has helped open the doors of opportunity for countless Americans - enabling our nation to grow, prosper, and reap the rewards of a diverse workforce. While we have made considerable progress, more remains to be done. EEOC stands ready to do its part to ensure the promise of equal opportunity to all

Sincerely,

Ida L. Castro
Chairwoman



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