Established in 1965, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is a civil rights agency within the United States Department of Labor.
OFCCP maintains a headquarters in Washington, DC, and several regional offices across the country. The headquarters office sets and coordinates the agency's enforcement priorities, compliance evaluation scheduling process, compliance assistance activities, staff and contractor education, contractor outreach and engagement, worker and community outreach, and performance data collection and reporting . The agency's regional offices oversee, conduct, and coordinate compliance evaluations and complaint investigations, and local and regional stakeholder engagement.
Compliance evaluations and complaint investigations are used by OFCCP to determine whether companies doing business with the Federal Government, that is, federal contractors and subcontractors (generally referred to as federal contractors), are living up to their obligation to not discriminate when making employment decisions such as hiring, firing, promoting, transferring, laying off, and paying or compensating employees. Federal contractors are also obligated to provide equal employment opportunity to all jobseekers and employees, and compliance evaluations determine whether contractors are meeting this requirement.
OFCCP enforces laws specifically prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating in employment based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender
identity , national origin , disabi lity, or status as a protected veteran. The laws OFCCP enforces also require these employers to provide equal employment opportunity to all employees and job applicants.
In addition to these nondiscrimination and equal opportunity obligations, federal contractors are prohibited from discharging or otherwise discriminating by taking adverse actions against their employees and job applicants for discussing ,
disclosing, or inquiring about their pay or that of their co-workers . OFCCP refers to this prohibition as the "pay transparency " provision . The types of adverse actions that federal contractors are prohibited from taking include, for example, firing , demoting, suspending, or refusing to hire an employee or job applicant. There
are two defenses to allegations of discrimination under OFCCP 's pay transparency protection : a general defense that can be based on the enforcement of a "workplace rule" that does not prohibit the discussion of compensation info rmation ; and an essential job functions defense.
OFCCP requires federal contractors to comply with these legal obligations. To help obtain compliance, OFCCP provides various kinds of compliance assistance to federal contractors. This assistance includes explaining the technical requirements associated with being compliant with OFCCP's requirements. It may also include assistance with how to implement these technical requirements.