Good Morning Folks! We just listened to Melissa Speer, OFCCP SWARM Regional Director, open up the 2014 SWARM Regional Conference from the beautiful Omni Interlocken Hotel in Broomfield, Colorado. As you can imagine Melissa had a lot of new OFCCP developments to chat about, including the recent Presidential executive actions surrounding pay discrimination as well as the new veterans and disabilty regulations.
During her remarks about the new regulations Melissa emphasized OFCCP’s position that the new veteran hiring benchmarks and disabilty utilizational goals are aspirational – not mandatory. In her, and OFCCP’s words,
“Failure to meet these goals and benchmarks is not a violation, but failing to try is.”
Under the new regulations, employers are now required to “assess the effectiveness” of each of their good faith outreach efforts and to develop a plan for addressing any efforts the employer deems to not be effective. So while OFCCP promises not issue violations to employers who do not meet the numerical goals and benchmarks, employers who can not demonstrate that they took efforts to “try” will almost surely find themselves faced with a potential violation.
With that said, now is the time to start taking stock of your diveristy partnerships and outreach efforts because once OFCCP’s commences its compliance review its too late.