USAID encourages contractors to prohibit job discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation

Winning an Executive Order from the President banning discrimination against transgender and LGBT people has been a top federal policy priority for NCTE. While we continue to push for this mandatory ban on discrimination across all federal contractors, it’s nice to see another agency making progress on this front.

Last week, The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) issued a policy encouraging its contractors and grant recipients to have policies prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, among other categories.

Federal law currently prohibits most federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of certain categories, including race, religion, sex, national origin, age, and disability.  With this new announcement, USAID contracts and grants will now include language stating that although it is not mandatory,

“the Agency encourages all organizations performing under USAID contracts, including those performed solely overseas, to apply these same standards of nondiscrimination to other categories, including sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy, and any other conduct that does not adversely affect performance.”

This policy represents an impressive step forward.  But because it is not mandatory and does not carry the force of law, employees with organizations contracting with USAID have no remedies if the policy is violated.  To protect the rights of employees like these, NCTE continues to urge President Obama to issue an executive order prohibiting all federal contractors from discriminating on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment.

2 Responses to USAID encourages contractors to prohibit job discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation

  1. “With this new announcement, USAID contracts and grants will now include language stating that although it is not mandatory,”

    Period. No need to say any more, the rest can be and will be ignored.

  2. Fed GVT Employee (Disabled Veteran) says:

    I to have been a victim of Discrimination as a Disabled Veteran and Transgender Government employee at BAE Systems in Nashua New Hampshire.
    This from a company who has an ethics policy about non discrimination on Gender Identity and Sexual Preferences, but has recent multiple cases against Gender, Disability, and there did not seem to be any problems with my performance prior to them learning of my transgender status. They often made comment about a transgender African American female that worked there and how disgusted they were to have her in the same building. There was no issues other than I documented any issues found as a Government auditor of their contract. The problems started after they knew of my status.
    After inquiring about the allegations by BAE in August their response was provided to me the reference to me leaving was after they bared me from their facility their response on 2/22/2012 is as follows;
    >> Dear Tamara,
    >>
    Several of the individuals who were involved in this case are no longer with BAE, and many organizational changes have occurred since you left, so retrieving everything I needed took far longer than anticipated. I have since conducted several interviews and reviewed the available material.
    >>
    What I see in the record is a complicated situation in which several BAE employees alleged that specific behavior – not your status, but statements and actions in the workplace unrelated to your job – made them feel harassed. The investigation conducted by HR was thorough, included several different sources of information, and seems to have followed an established process.

    >> John W. Truslow, III
    >>
    >> Director, Ethics and Business Conduct
    >>
    >> BAE Systems, Inc., Electronic Systems
    john.truslow@baesystems.com
    >>

    If they cannot do it one way they will always try another.

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