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EEO Policy Statement

MEMORANDUM

TO: All Employees of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
FROM: Charlotte A. Burrows, Chair
CC: Stan Pietrusiak, Director
Office of Equal Opportunity
SUBJECT:    FY 2021 EEO Policy Statement
DATE: April 1, 2021

This is an enormously important time for civil rights, not only for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC or the Commission), but for our entire nation.  The EEOC’s core mission is to prevent and remedy discrimination in America’s workplaces and advance equal employment opportunity for all.  As the primary federal agency charged with enforcing the nation’s employment discrimination laws, the EEOC must honor its mission by ensuring that our own employees can perform their work free from unlawful discrimination, harassment, and retaliation.     

This EEO Policy Statement is a reminder that all EEOC employees are protected from discrimination under the laws we enforce.  EEOC employees and applicants for employment are covered by federal laws and Presidential Executive Orders designed to safeguard federal employees and job applicants from discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), parental status, national origin, age, disability, genetic information (including family medical history), political affiliation, military service, or other non-merit based factors.  These protections extend to all management practices and decisions, including recruitment and hiring, appraisal systems, promotions, training, and career development programs. Consistent with these obligations, EEOC also provides reasonable accommodations to employees and applicants with disabilities and for sincerely held religious beliefs, observances. and practices. 

EEOC employees and applicants are also protected against retaliation.  Consistent with federal laws, acts of retaliation against an employee who engages in protected activity, such as reporting discrimination or harassment or participating in the EEO process, whistleblowing, or the exercise of any appeal or grievance right provided by law will not be tolerated at EEOC.  In addition, as provided in the RESOLVE Program Non-Retaliation Statement, the EEOC will not tolerate retaliation against RESOLVE participants.  The EEOC will take prompt action when an EEOC employee, agent of EEOC, or non-employee is found to have engaged in discrimination, retaliation, or harassment (including sexual harassment). 

We must be diligent in maintaining a workplace free from discrimination.  This includes working to ensure that harassment, on any protected basis, does not occur at our agency.  I encourage all employees to review the EEOC’s Policy Statement on the Prohibition of Harassing Conduct in the Workplace, and the updated Order 560.005 on the Prevention and Elimination of Harassing Conduct in the Workplace.  I also take this opportunity to reaffirm that EEOC managers and supervisors have a critical role and responsibility to help prevent and eliminate harassment in the workplace.  Likewise, I wish to remind all EEOC employees of their duty not to engage in harassing conduct and to report any such conduct if it occurs.

EEOC employees or applicants who believe that they have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, or retaliation should contact EEOC’s Office of Equal Opportunity at (202) 663-7081 or Contact_OEO@eeoc.gov; or, as appropriate, the Office of Special Counsel at (202) 804-7000 or the Merit Systems Protection Board at (202) 653-7200.  Any employee wishing to participate in the RESOLVE program should contact the RESOLVE office at (202) 663-4545 or Resolve.Program@eeoc.gov

It is incumbent upon all of us to ensure that the EEOC is a model employer and serves as an example of equity and inclusiveness for all workplaces, within and outside the federal government.  Likewise, each of us must take responsibility for implementing the Commission’s EEO Policy and cooperating fully in its enforcement.  In so doing, we reaffirm our collective commitment to a workplace free of unlawful discrimination, harassment, and retaliation.