Photo of Laura A. Mitchell

Laura A. Mitchell is a Principal in the Denver, Colorado, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She is a member of the firm’s Affirmative Action and OFCCP Defense practice group as well as the firm’s Pay Equity Resource Group. She is also on the leadership team for the firm’s Government Contractor Industry Group.

Her practice is focused on representing government and non-government contractors in OFCCP matters, preparing for and defending OFCCP audits, and counseling employers on issues stemming from OFCCP regulations. Ms. Mitchell personally oversees the development of hundreds of AAPs each year and is intimately involved in the defense of numerous OFCCP audits. She also spends significant time counseling companies in connection with conducting pay equity analyses as well as government contractor employment obligations.

Ms. Mitchell is the editor and a principal contributor of The Affirmative Action Law Advisor blog and frequently presents on pay equity, affirmative action compliance, OFCCP enforcement trends, and government contractor obligations.

JD Supra Readers Choice Top Author 2018

As promised, OFCCP has released a handful of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) addressing the President’s Executive Order Combating Race and Gender Stereotyping (Executive Order 13950).

While limited in nature, the FAQs confirm what OFCCP has been expressing regarding the executive order, including the fact that the Order does not outright prohibit unconscious bias training but

As instructed by last week’s Combatting Race and Sex Stereotyping Executive Order, OFCCP has set up a hotline to receive complaints of unlawful stereotyping.  The executive order directs OFCCP to

establish a hotline and investigate complaints received under both this order as well as Executive Order 11246. . .  .

Notably, the hotline is

OFCCP’s most recent CSAL included, for the first time, establishments selected for promotion and accommodation focused reviews.  While the Agency has talked for sometime about initiating these types of focused reviews, there has been little information available to help contractors understand what the reviews will entail.   Today, the agency has provided some, albeit limited,

On September 22, 2020 President Trump issued an Executive Order “on Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping” (“September 22 EO”) covering government contractors and certain grant recipients that outlines what those organizations cannot include in employee training. It appears, the September 22 EO covers all federal contractors and subcontractors and will require contracting agencies to insert

As reported in today’s Federal Register, OFCCP is seeking regulatory authority to:

  • Require federal contractors to annually certify they have prepared AAPs via an online interface; and,
  • Institute “a secure method” to electronically submit AAPs when contractors are scheduled for an audit.

As we reported nearly a year ago, because OFCCP cannot conduct

As it has done previously, OFCCP announced a three-month (August 27, 2020 to November 27, 2020) national interest exemption from AAP federal contractor obligations for “contracts entered into specifically to provide Hurricane Laura relief.”  The exemption relieves these contractors from the obligations to prepare written AAPs under Executive Order 11246, Section 503 and VEVRAA.

On Monday this week, OFCCP announced user-friendly updates to the National Pre-Award Registry and a new VEVRAA Hiring Benchmark Database.  Both tools appear to make information access easier for federal contractors, as well as individuals with vision challenges.

The Registry is a useful tool for contractors because it identifies contractor AAP locations that have

As anticipated OFCCP has started scheduling VEVRAA Focused Reviews, the Agency announced today via e-mail.

The announcement highlighted a number of VEVRAA resources available for contractors, including:

OFCCP encourages contractors to contact them directly with questions either by calling OFCCP’s toll-free