Today, the congressional Subcommittees on Workforce Protections and Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions heard testimony in connection with Executive Order 13673 – Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, signed in July 2014 by President Obama.
This Executive Order requires contracting agencies to take into account violations of 14 Federal statues (and equivalent state laws) when considering contract awards. Under the Executive Order, contractors and subcontractors will be required to report three years of violations of these laws during the bidding process and then provide updates every six months.
In addition, the Executive Order prohibits contractors with contracts in excess of $1million from utilizing pre-dispute mandatory arbitration agreements with employees for disputes arising out of Title VII and from torts related to sexual assault or harassment.
As anticipated there are concerns about the implications of these requirements for the contractor community.
The hearing provided committee members an opportunity to examine the effect of the president’s executive order as well as concerns raised by employers and stakeholders including the Orders implications on a contractor’s due process rights and inter-play with the Federal Arbitration Act.
We will continue to track developments in connection with this Executive Order and provide updates as we learn of them.