The short answer to this question is not much, or so it seems.
Part of the reason for this is likely the fact we are still awaiting selection of a new OFCCP Director. Deputy OFCCP Director Thomas M. Dowd currently continues in the position of Acting Director and we’ve not heard any news regarding DOL Secretary Acosta’s plans for appointment of a new Director. Of course, that may be due to the Trump Administration’s budget proposal to merge OFCCP into the EEOC.
The White House’s recent Regulatory Agenda for DOL, which contained no regulatory agenda for OFCCP (literally nothing), also indicates OFCCP is in somewhat of a temporary holding pattern during the transition. Additionally, if OFCCP is to be merged into EEOC, which remains to be seen, it was not evidenced in the regulatory agenda as EEOC did not mention OFCCP in it’s upcoming plans.
Both Tom Dowd and EEOC Commissioner Victoria Lipnic are scheduled to speak at next weeks Industry Liaison Group National Conference in San Antonio, Texas. Hopefully they will be able to share insights as to the agencies’ focus and agenda.
With that said, it does appear OFCCP is taking this time to focus on assisting contractors. A couple of recent OFCCP communications suggest OFCCP is reemphasizing technical assistance. For example, on July 14, OFCCP sent an email – “Contractors Never Have to Pay a Third Party for OFCCP’s EEO Poster” – reminding contractors of the obligation to “prominently post the ‘Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law’ poster…” (and the OFCCP supplement) which are free at OFCCP’s Website.
A week later, OFCCP sent an email touting its Employment Referral Resource Directory (ERRD). “This free contractor tool lists governmental and non-governmental (not-for-profit) organizations that have agreed to be recruitment and job referral resources for contractors seeking qualified job applicants… OFCCP is inviting more organizations to participate in the ERRD so that we can continue to grow the directory and possibly help even more contractors with their hiring challenges.”
Keep in mind, however, Labor Secretary Acosta has said an OFCCP/EEOC merger would not reduce OFCCP’s enforcement efforts, and there is no reason to believe otherwise. OFCCP issued Courtesy Scheduling Announcement Letters (CSALs) in February 2017 and audits continue without much change, particularly in the Pacific Region.
Thus, contractors should take advantage of the ERRD and other OFCCP compliance outreach efforts, and not become complacent. As always, audits are coming and the best way to defend an OFCCP audit is to be prepared.