The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

EEOC Office of Legal Counsel staff members wrote the following letter to respond to a request for public comment from a federal agency or department. This letter is an informal discussion of the noted issue and does not constitute an official opinion of the Commission.


GINA: Agency Discrimination Complaint Form

August 5, 2014

 

TRANSMITTED VIA E-MAIL

Jennifer Jessup
Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer
Department of Commerce
Room 6616
14th and Constitution Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20230

Re: 79 Fed. Reg. 33,722, Department of Commerce, Office of the Secretary; Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Complaint of Discrimination Against the U.S. Department of Commerce

Dear Ms. Jessup:

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) submits this comment in response to the Department of Commerce’s (DOC’s) request for comments on Form CD-498, Complaint of Employment Discrimination.1  EEOC offers these comments as the agency responsible for enforcing the federal laws that prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, and genetic information.2  The laws enforced by EEOC also prohibit retaliation for filing a charge or complaint of discrimination, participating in a discrimination proceeding, or otherwise opposing discrimination.3

We have three comments regarding Form CD-498 and accompanying material.  First, we suggest that DOC consider adding “(including family medical history)” after “genetic information” on the Instruction page, Complaint Form, Privacy Act Statement, and EEO Complaint Process page.  Many individuals are not aware that genetic information includes family medical history.  As a result, we have revised our outreach and education material, and suggested that stakeholders make similar efforts, to ensure that applicants, employees, agencies, employers, and members of the public understand the forms of genetic information that are protected by Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008.

Second, we suggest that DOC add “genetic information (including family medical history),” after “disability,” in the first sentence on the U.S. Department of Commerce, Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Complaint Process page.

Finally, to ensure that Complainants see and follow the instructions, we suggest that DOC consider moving “Detach and Keep this Sheet” from the bottom of the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Complaint Process page to the top of the page.

Thank you for the opportunity to provide these comments.  Should you wish to discuss them, please feel free to contact Senior Attorney Advisor Lisa Schnall at (202) 663-4845.

Sincerely,

/s/  
Corbett L. Anderson
Assistant Legal Counsel


Footnote

1 Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Complaint of Discrimination Against the U.S. Department of Commerce, 79 Fed. Reg. 33,722 (June 12, 2014).

2 See Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq.; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, as amended, 29 U.S.C. § 621 et seq.; Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. § 791; the Equal Pay Act of 1963, 29 U.S.C. § 206(d); and Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, 42 U.S.C. § 2000ff.

3 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-3(a); 29 U.S.C. § 623(d); 29 U.S.C. § 791(g) (incorporating, among other provisions, the anti-retaliation provision of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended, into the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended); 29 U.S.C. § 215(a)(3); 42 U.S.C. § 2000ff-6(f).


This page was last modified on Septamber 16, 2014.

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