New JerseyDOLWD EO Monitoring “Equal Opportunity: Your business, our business”
EO Officers • As NJDL&WD EO Officers we: • Investigate discrimination complaints • Provide technical assistance to local EO officers and EO Representatives • Develop MOA, guidance and directives • Conduct mediation • Ensure that services are provided in a fair & equitable manner • Serve as liaisons with the USDOL CRC
EO Monitoring • Monitoring is another function of our job • We are required to monitor as State EO officers in accordance to Federal Register 29 CFR Part 37 (see 37.51 – 37.54) • We are therefore authorized to monitor • We monitor recipients receiving federal funds (WIA and One-Stops) • We monitor 18 (core One-Stops) counties annually • This includes all major partners (ES, UI, etc.)
Monitoring (cont’d) • Our primary focus is to ensure that One-Stop services are provided in a non-discriminatory and equitable manner • Our first step is to identify the areas to be reviewed in a particular year. • In a two year period, we would have examined all of the following for each One-Stop area:
Items Reviewed in a two Year Cycle • Census data • Equity of services • Organizational composition • Designation of local WIA EO Officer • Local EO file (containing directives and TA material) • Local WIA discrimination complaint file and Logs
Items Reviewed in a two Year Cycle • Bilingual staffing of One-Stop • Universal Access to One-Stop services • EO is the Law notification (Posters/Flyers) • Sexual Harassment notification
Items Reviewed (Continued) • Interviews with One-Stop staff to determine awareness and readiness to deliver equitable services • Surveys of One-Stop customers to determine how they feel they are being treated • Observation of service delivery - individual and group • Review of contract assurances
Items Reviewed (Continued) • Review of accessibility of One-Stop facility, programs and services • Visit a subcontractor (usually a training school) • Tour the subcontractor facility and check for accessibility • Meet with school administration and interview WIA students
Notifying the One-Stop System • After identifying the areas to be reviewed we prepare for our onsite review • We select a Core One-Stop Career Center • We telephone the WIA Director/One-Stop Operator, ES Manager, UI Manager • As part of our program accessibility efforts, we also involve Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS) management
Notifying the One-Stop System • Each of the parties contacted receives a follow-up memo or letter regarding the dates of the review and a listing of the review topics. • This notice (like our monitoring instruments) is a shell-document on which names and dates are added. • Copies of the notices go to appropriate executive staff within the Department
Desk Review • Prior to the onsite visit we review the following: • Census data for the One-Stop area • Service data produced by the Department (this data is requested for all one stops earlier in the year) • Organizational charts by ethnicity and gender
Onsite Visit The “package” we take to each review includes: • Copies of review notifications • Desk review findings • EO review checklist • Accessibility to Services & Facility Checklists
Onsite Visit • Forms to review WIA customer records • Customer questionnaire • Forms to record observation of service delivery • Staff questionnaire • Extra copies of directives and EO Posters (Sp/E)
The Entrance Interview • The EO team meets with managers/directors of One-Stop programs at the core One-Stop Center • The purpose of the entrance interview is to ensure management and front line staff are prepared for our visit
The Entrance Interview • We describe the monitoring activities that will take place • We discuss desk review findings • We gather background information (or updates) about the One-Stop
The Entrance Interview • Questions are asked about how the Universal Access mandate is being addressed • Questions are asked about how limited English proficient individuals are being served • The accessibility to facility and programs checklist is completed
The Entrance Interview • As requested in the notification sent to the One-Stop Director/Operator, we request desk space or room from which to conduct staff interviews • EO review team members may at this point divide the tasks to be accomplished • One may conduct staff and customer interviews while the other is inspecting files, posters, and verifying accessibility.
Interviews • Begin with a proper introduction • Are conducted anonymously • Nonthreatening • Allow the staff or customer to give full responses • Include notation of person’s gender, ethnicity (where known or observable) and disability (if observable)
File Reviews • 10% of WIA files reviewed • Maximum of 50 files per program (ES, UI, WIA) • Monitoring checklist is used that notes: receipt for issuance of EO Notice by WIA, absence of discriminatory comments in file, and absence of medical information.
File Reviews • Customers name (initials only), ethnicity, gender, and disability are captured on the checklist • Files with problems are noted on checklist and are set aside for discussion with local EO Officer
Observation • Observation of individual services (front desk/reception, intake, counseling) and group services (orientation, job club) are conducted unobtrusively • Ethnicity, gender, and disability is noted (as much as possible) in the count of those customers being observed • Checklist is used that identifies service being provided and determination, based on observation, of whether service is being delivered equitably
Inspection of Posters • EO is the Law posters should be prominently displayed in public waiting areas and employee break rooms • Name and number of current local EO Officer should be on poster • The EO Representative (State employee whose EO duties are limited) should also be identified on poster
Posters (Continued) • TDD number should be on poster • Poster should be in Spanish and English • Next to the EO is the Law posters should be the Sexual Harassment posters (also in Spanish and English • Missing or damaged posters will be noted and replaced onsite by EO team • Additional posters may be mailed to the One-Stop
Visit to Subcontractor • Part of the notice sent to the WIA One-Stop Director or operator is a request that arrangements be made for the EO review team to visit a training facility that receives WIA funds • We usually ask the local EO Officer (or other senior official) to accompany us • The local EO Officer will see, hear, and learn along with us
Subcontractor (continued) • We meet the school president or owner (or other designated representative) and discuss the purpose of the visit • We take a tour of the facility and collect school brochures • Tours are not only educational, but you get a chance to see the school programs in action
Subcontractor (continued) • We check for accessibility to individuals with disabilities (signage, parking, exterior/interior paths of travel, elevators, entrances/doors, public facilities, computer stations, fire alarms, and so on) • We interview students placed there by the One-Stop Center under review to determine how they are being treated
Subcontractor (continued) • Any findings or concerns are shared with both the local EO Officer and the school president/owner • WE ARE ALMOST DONE!!!!
The Exit Conference • After the EO team meets to discuss EO findings the local EO Officer is asked to gather One-Stop Directors and ES/UI Managers • Any issues raised as a result of the review are discussed and, if possible, resolved • EO issues not resolved during the review and exit conference become corrective action requirements
Exit Conference (continued) • A date is given for the issuance of the EO monitoring report (within 30 days of the completion of the onsite review) • Those present are informed that corrective action responses are due within 30 days of receiving the report
The EO Report • After monitoring, we prepare a report about our findings • The report is sent to directors and regional & local management
The EO Report • Depending on the areas chosen for review during a particular cycle, the report may contain statements and/or findings about the following: • Legal Authority to Monitor • Notification • Purpose • Methodology • Census & Data findings • Officials who were present during the review
The EO Report • Background information • Service & facility accessibility checklists • Universal access • Services to LEP customers • Review of customer files • Interviews with staff • Interviews with customers
The EO Report • Observation of individual and group services • Inspection of EO posters and flyers • Inspection of sexual harassment posters • Inspection of EO complaint file • Review of contract assurances • Inspection of local EO Officer’s file of directives and TA material • Visit to a training subcontractor facility • Technical assistance provided • Exit Conference
EO Report • The report includes findings/recommendations and gives a time frame (usually within 30 days of receipt of the report) for a corrective action response • The EO report serves as evidence that the MOA monitoring element has been met and can be reviewed by USDOL.
Corrective Action • Corrective action is something a program area needs to address in order to maintain federal compliance with applicable EO laws and regulations • The appropriate program area is required to notify our office as to what steps will be taken to correct an issue(s) • If we do not receive a response, we attempt follow-up contact with the area • Continued non response will result in communication with either Assistant Commissioners, the Chief of staff, Deputy Commissioner or the Commissioner • As a last resort, the USDOL may be alerted and federal funding could be Jeopardized.
Things to Consider • The EO Unit is an integral part of the Department within that state • Monitoring should be more beneficial than punitive • Be as prepared as possible for each review • Be on time…use time wisely • Be professional, polite, take pride in what you do • Have plenty of business cards for distribution