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WASHINGTON-NCUA, CUNA, and NAFCU are fairly diverse employers in relation to the demographics of the country, according to internal tallies. So how is your credit union doing? NCUA Director of Equal Opportunity Programs Marilyn Gannon said that NCUA is aggressive about recruiting employees from all types of backgrounds. “The agency goal is to provide equal opportunity to all candidates to be considered for positions. Affirmative employment means broadening the candidate pool to include everyone who is qualified and to remove barriers that prohibit people from being included in the candidate pool,” she explained. To ensure the agency’s success in doing this, NCUA recruits through the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and performs targeted advertising for jobs, such as placing ads through affinity groups of at historically African-American colleges, for example. The federal regulator does not use any kind of quota system. To promote learning about various cultural backgrounds, NCUA features presentations about a particular population six months each year, Gannon said. For example, May was Asian and Pacific Islander month and September is scheduled for Hispanic and Latino month. In March, during women’s history month, a spokesperson from the National Spy Museum spoke to NCUA employees about female spies. The chairman also makes a proclamation for each celebration. If there is a complaint made by an agency employee, the first step is informal counseling to seek a resolution with a collateral duty counselor within the agency. “Often the resolution is jus that the employee is heard,” Gannon said. However, if the complainant is not satisfied, they can file a formal complaint, which is looked into by contracted investigators. A final agency decision is then made, usually by the executive director. The employee can appeal to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). CUNA Director of Employment and Labor Relations and Recruitment Scott Lopez said that CUNA uses some of the same recruiting techniques as NCUA, like targeted job advertising. The trade association also works with local job service agencies; a youth employment program called Urban League aimed at serving at-risk children; and In Roads, which connects minority youth with community service, summer employment, and internship opportunities. When looking at CUNA’s numbers (see chart), their overall employment diversity is not as high as when attention is focused solely on its Washington, D.C. office. CUNA Vice President of Communications and Media Outreach Pat Keefe explained that Madison, Wisconsin is not as diverse an area ethnically and so it is harder to recruit minorities. NAFCU does not really have to work at diversity, Vice President of Communications Jay Morris said. “We are proud of the diversity in the NAFCU staff,” he said, even though the trade association does not make any specific efforts to recruit minorities or women. However, he explained that if the numbers did get out of balance, the organization would take steps to correct it. The EEOC enforces several laws preventing discrimination in hiring and in the workplace. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. This law covers all private employers, state and local governments, and education institutions with more than 15 employees, as well as private and public employment agencies, and labor organizations and their management committees controlling apprenticeship and training. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 was designed to ensure men and women received equal compensation for equal work. This law covers all employers also covered by the Federal Wage and Hour Law. People over the age of 40 are protected by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) of 1967. The ADEA covers all private employers with more than 20 employees, state and local governments, employment agencies, and labor organizations. Titles I and V of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 prohibit employment discrimination against people with disabilities in the private sector and state and local governments, while federal government employees are covered by the Rehabilitation act of 1973. The Civil Rights Act of 1991 provides for monetary loss in cases of intentional employment discrimination. Additionally, the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, which covers most federal agency employees, contains several prohibited personnel practices designed to promote evenhandedness in federal employment actions. The law prohibits persons in positions of authority to take personnel action discriminating for or against employees or applicants based on race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. NCUA got into hot water with this one just a few years ago with an unofficial scheme to place more African Americans and women in positions at the agency. The law also prohibits employment decisions that do not affect a person’s ability to do their job based on marital status or political affiliation. OPM has taken this to include sexual orientation as well. Whistle blowing is also covered under this law. Discrimination prohibited under the above laws includes hiring and firing; compensation, assignment, or classification; transfer, promotion, layoff, or recall; job advertisements; recruitment; testing; use of company facilities; training and apprenticeship; fringe benefits; pay, retirement plans, and disability leave; harassment based on race, color religion, sex, national origin, disability, or age; retaliation for filing a charge under these laws; employment decisions based on stereotypes; or denying employment opportunities based on individuals relationship with another person of a particular race, religion, national origin, or disability. Situations that could fall under these prohibitions include a requirement to speak only English at work, employment verification status requests aimed at a particular group, or citizenship requirements. Employers must post notices to all employees advising them of these rights and their right to be free from retaliation. [email protected]

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