Federal supply and service contractors must begin using the most recent race, ethnicity, and sex data from the Commerce Department's Census Bureau to develop written affirmative action programs commencing on or after Jan. 1, 2014, the Labor Department's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs announced May 15 in a notice posted to its website.
Last November, the Census Bureau began publicly releasing its 2006-2010 Equal Employment Opportunity Tabulation, a set of 107 tables that break down the U.S. labor force by sex, race, and ethnicity, and is searchable by geographic location, occupation, and other variables (63 BTM 389, 12/4/12).
The bureau compiled the data using its American Community Survey at the request of OFCCP, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Justice Department Civil Rights Division's Employment Litigation Section, and the Office of Personnel Management.
Federal contractors use that data to perform an external availability analysis as part of their AAP obligations. If the analysis reveals a lower percentage of women or minorities in a particular job group of the contractor's workforce than would reasonably be expected, given the availability of such workers within a reasonable recruitment area, the contractor must establish placement goals for women or minorities in the job group.
In its May 15 notice, OFCCP said it recognized that some federal contractors already have conducted availability determination for their 2013 AAPs by using the older EEO data.
“OFCCP further recognize[s] that, for many contractors, converting their IT systems and availability calculations to the new data will take time due to changes in the coding and categorization of data in the 2010 EEO Tab,” the agency said. “Therefore, OFCCP will permit contractors to continue to use the Census 2000 Special EEO File in the development of all AAPs commencing in 2013.”
However, OFCCP said contractors must use the 2010 EEO Tab for all AAPs developed on or after Jan. 1, 2014.
“OFCCP will, likewise, begin using the 2010 EEO Tab to evaluate the reasonableness of all AAPs commencing on or after Jan. 1, 2014,” the agency said, but added that contractors may use the newer EEO data immediately, if they so choose.
Text of the OFCCP notice is available at http://op.bna.com/dlrcases.nsf/r?Open=jaca-97smsx.
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