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Equal Opportunity Directive 2000-02



United States Department of the Interior

OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY
Washington, D.C.  20240

November 5, 1999


EQUAL OPPORTUNITY DIRECTIVE NUMBER 2000-02 (REVISED)

TO:                   Bureau/Office Equal Opportunity Directors

FROM:              E. Melodee Stith, Director, Office for Equal Opportunity

Subject:             New 1614 Procedures - Revised Sample Form Letters

This revises and rescinds the attached sample form letters, dated November 5, 1999, and adds new form letters. This does not replace the cover letter of the Equal Opportunity Directive(EOD) 2000-2 which was previously issued since the information has not changed.

These sample letters reflect the changes that were made effective on November 9, 1999. Please feel free to use them as written or to modify them, as needed, in order to meet the specific needs of your Bureau. For your further convenience, these forms will be e-mailed as attachments for your immediate use and retention.

This Revised EOD includes the following as attachments:

  • Acknowledgment Letter
  • ADR Election Form
  • Acceptance Letter
  • Mixed-Case Acceptance Letter
  • Accept Letter with a Partial Dismissal
  • Part of Existing Claim Letter
  • Like or Related to Pending Claim Letter
  • ROI Checklist
  • ROI Letter w/ Election Form & ROI Letter in Mixed Case

As you review this information please call us should you have any questions or concerns.

Attachments   -   as stated
 

DISTRIBUTION:      Bureau and EEO Officers

INQUIRIES:             Carolyn M. Burrell, Assistant Director, Complaints Processing and Adjudication, 202-208-3442

EXPIRES:                When Superceded






Acknowledgment Letter

 
 
Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested

 
Docket Number
 

Address
 

Dear Addressee:
 
This letter is to acknowledge receipt of your complaint of discrimination filed against the Department of the Interior (Bureau)___________on (postmark date). Your complaint has been assigned docket number(XXX- - ). Please refer to this docket number in all future correspondence regarding your complaint.

If your complaint is accepted, it will be processed in accordance with Title 29, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 1614 which govern the processing of Federal sector discrimination complaints. You will be advised, in writing, in the near future, of the claims identified in your complaint that will be investigated and provided further information on the administrative process.

Should you have any further questions, please contact this office at ( ).

                                                                                        Sincerely,
 

                                                                                        Director, Office for Equal Opportunity
 







ELECTION OF EEO COUNSELING FOR ADR



I, _________________________ have been offered ADR in an effort to resolve my informal complaint brought to the attention of the EEO Counselor on (D/M/Y) . I have been fully informed about the counseling process and the ADR program and understand both processes. If I elect to enter ADR offered to me by the agency, I understand that I have the right to file a formal complaint if the ADR does not achieve a resolution.
 

I elect:
 

_____ (a) to participate in the traditional 30-day EEO counseling process, which may be extended to 90 days upon written agreement with the EEO counselor.

_____ (b) to participate in the Alternate Dispute Resolution offered by the agency, which may extend the pre-complaint process up to 90 days.
 
 
 
 
 
 

_________________________________________ ___________________

Aggrieved Person Date
 
 





Accept Letter



Certified Mail 

Return Receipt Requested
 
Docket Number
 
Address
 

Dear Addressee:
 

This letter is in further reference to your complaint of discrimination filed against the U.S. Department of the Interior (Department), (Bureau/Office) on (M/D/Y). Your complaint has been assigned docket number (XXX- - ). Please refer to this docket number in any correspondence referencing your complaint.
 
We have reviewed your complaint and have accepted the following claims of discrimination for investigation:
 
(Identify the claims of discrimination with specificity and clarity. Avoid fragmentation.)
 
Please review the accepted claim(s) carefully. If you are not satisfied with the accepted claim(s) as stated, you may, within five (5) calendar days of receipt of this letter, submit a statement to this Office concerning our articulation of your claim(s). It is important that your claim(s) are properly identified. Any unresolved differences regarding the identified claims will be recorded in the complaint file.
 
You will be contacted by an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Complaints Investigator in the near future. It is expected that the investigation will be completed within 180 calendar days from the date you filed your complaint, or you will have the right to request a hearing before an Administrative Judge (AJ) from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) after that time.
 
Upon completion of the investigation, you will be issued a copy of the Report of Investigation along with an election notice to request a hearing before an AJ or an immediate final agency decision without a hearing from the Director, Office for Equal Opportunity(OEO), Department of the Interior.
 
If you elect to have a hearing, you are required to certify to the AJ that you sent a copy of the hearing request to the Department. Your request for a hearing should be made directly to the EEOC and sent to the following address:
 
Address for the appropriate EEOC Field Office
 
A copy of your request for a hearing should also be provided to:
 
 
Address for the Bureau/Office
 
The hearing is an adjudicatory proceeding that completes the process of developing a full and appropriate record. The Administrative Judge will assume full responsibility for the adjudication of the complaint, including overseeing the development of the record. See 29 C.F.R. 1614.109 for more information about the hearing process.
 
If you request a final agency decision without a hearing, the Director, OEO will issue the decision within 60 calendar days of its receipt of your request.
 
If you are not satisfied with the final agency decision, you may appeal the decision to the EEOC within 30 calendar days of your receipt of the decision, with a copy of the appeal to the Director, OEO. Your appeal must be mailed to:
 

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
Post Office Box 19848
Washington, D.C. 20036
 
or, you may hand deliver your appeal to the EEOC at the following address:
 

Office of Federal Operations
Appellate Review Programs
1801 L Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20507
 
or, you may fax your appeal to the EEOC at (202) 663-7022.
 
You have the right to file a civil action in an appropriate U.S. District Court after 180 calendar days from the date you filed your complaint, if the Department has not issued a final decision and no appeal has been filed.
 

You also have the right to file a civil action within 90 calendar days of your receipt of the EEOC's decision on your appeal, or after 180 calendar days of filing an appeal if the EEOC has not issued a decision.
 

You will continue to receive specific information about your rights and responsibilities in the complaint process as your complaint progresses. If at any time you have questions regarding the process, you may contact (name of EEO Person) at (telephone number).
 

Sincerely,
 
 

Chief, Office for Equal Opportunity
 

Enclosure - EEOC Appeal Form 573

cc: Complainant or Complainant's Representative

Complaint File





Mixed-Case Accept Letter

 
Certified Mail

Return Receipt Requested
 
Docket Number
 
Address
 
Dear Addressee:
 
This letter is in further reference to your complaint of discrimination filed against the U.S. Department of the Interior (Department), (Bureau/Office) on(M/D/Y). Your complaint has been assigned docket number (XXX- - ). Please refer to this docket number in any correspondence referencing your complaint.
 
We have reviewed your complaint and have accepted the following claims of discrimination for investigation:

(Identify the claims of discrimination with specificity and clarity. Avoid fragmentation.)
 
Please review the accepted claim(s) carefully. If you are not satisfied with the accepted claim(s) as stated, you may, within five (5) calendar days of receipt of this letter, submit a statement to this Office concerning our articulation of your claim(s). It is important that your claim(s) are properly identified. Any unresolved differences regarding the identified claims will be recorded in the complaint file.
 
Your complaint contains allegations of discrimination that are appealable to the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). Therefore, your complaint will be processed in accordance with Title 29, Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), Parts 1614.301 through 1614.310.

You will be contacted by an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Complaints Investigator in the near future. Upon completion of the investigation, you will be issued a copy of the Report of Investigation (ROI).
 
You will receive a final agency decision on the merits of your complaint from the Departmental Director, Office for Equal Opportunity within 45 calendar days of its receipt of your ROI.
 
If you are not satisfied with the final agency decision on your mixed-case complaint, you may appeal the decision to the MSPB (not the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) within 30 calendar days of your receipt of the decision.
 
If a final agency decision is not issued with 120 calendar days of the date you filed your mixed-case complaint, you may appeal the matter to the MSPB at any time thereafter; or, you may file a civil action in an appropriate U.S. District Court.
 
Upon receipt of the decision from the MSPB on your mixed-case complaint, you may petition the EEOC to consider the MSPB's decision. Filing the petition to the EEOC must be made by certified mail to:

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
Post Office Box 19848
Washington, D.C. 20036
 
The petition must be filed with the EEOC either within 30 calendar days of receipt of the final decision of the MSPB or within 30 calendar days of when the decision of an MSPB Field Office becomes final. At the time the MSPB provides you with their decision, you will be provided with information on how to file your petition with the EEOC.
 

You will continue to receive specific information about your rights and responsibilities in the complaint process as your complaint progresses. If at any time you have questions regarding the process, you may contact (name of EEO Person) at (telephone number).
 

Sincerely,
 
 
 
 
Chief, Office for Equal Opportunity
 
Enclosure - MSPB Appeal Form
 
cc: Complainant or Complainant's Representative Complaint File
 





 

Accept letter with Partial Dismissal

Certified Mail

Return Receipt Requested
 
Docket Number
 
Address
 

Dear Addressee:
 
This letter is in further reference to your complaint of discrimination filed against the U.S. Department of the Interior (Department), (Bureau/Office) on (M/D/Y). Your complaint has been assigned docket number(XXX- - ). Please refer to this docket number in any correspondence referencing your complaint.
 
We have reviewed your complaint and have the following claims of discrimination:
 
(Identify the claims of discrimination with specificity and clarity. Avoid fragmentation.)
 
The claims of discrimination identified above as numbersx, x, and x, have been accepted for investigation. Please review the accepted claim(s) carefully. If you are not satisfied with the accepted claim(s) as stated, you may, within five (5) calendar days of receipt of this letter, submit a statement to this Office concerning our articulation of your claim(s). It is important that your claim(s) are properly identified. Any unresolved differences regarding the identified claims will be recorded in the complaint file.
 
You will be contacted by an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Complaints Investigator in the near future. It is expected that the investigation will be completed within 180 calendar days from the date you filed your complaint, or you will have the right to request a hearing before an Administrative Judge (AJ) from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) after that time.
 
Upon completion of the investigation, you will be issued a copy of the Report of Investigation along with an election notice to request a hearing before an AJ or an immediate final agency decision without a hearing from the Director, Office for Equal Opportunity(OEO), Department of the Interior.
 
The claims of discrimination identified above as numbersx, x, and x have not been accepted for investigation. We are recommending dismissal of these claims for the following reasons.
 
Give the rationale for dismissing each claim and citing the appropriate dismissal regulation.
 
The following claims of discrimination have not been accepted for investigation:
 
(Identify the claims of discrimination that are being dismissed pursuant to 1614.107(a) and the reasons for the dismissal).
 
There is no immediate right to appeal the dismissal of the above identified claims. If you elect to have a hearing on the accepted claims of your complaint, the AJ will evaluate our reasons for dismissing a portion of your complaint. If the AJ does not agree with our partial dismissal of claims, your entire complaint or all of the claims not meeting the standards for dismissal will continue in the hearing process. The AJ's decision on the partial dismissal will become part of the AJ's final decision on your complaint.
 
If you elect a hearing, you are also required to certify to the AJ that you sent a copy of the hearing request to the Department. Your request for a hearing should be made directly to the EEOC and sent to the following address:
 
Address for the appropriate EEOC Field Office
 
A copy of your request for a hearing should also be provided to:
 
Address for the Bureau/Office
 
The hearing is an adjudicatory proceeding that completes the process of developing a full and appropriate record. The Administrative Judge will assume full responsibility for the adjudication of the complaint, including overseeing the development of the record. See 29 C.F.R. 1614.109 for more information about the hearing process.

If you request a final agency decision without a hearing, the Director, OEO will issue the decision within 60 calendar days of its receipt of your request. The Director, OEO's decision will address all claims in your complaint, including its rationale for dismissing claims, if any, and its findings on the merits of the remainder of the complaint.
 
If you are not satisfied with the final agency decision, you may appeal the decision to the EEOC within 30 calendar days of your receipt of the decision, with a copy of the appeal to the Director, OEO. Your appeal must be mailed to:
 
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
Post Office Box 19848
Washington, D.C. 20036
 
or, you may hand-deliver your appeal to the EEOC at the following address:
 
Office of Federal Operations
Appellate Review Programs
1801 L Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20507
 
or, you may fax your appeal to the EEOC at (202) 663-7022.
 
You have the right to file a civil action in an appropriate U.S. District Court after 180 calendar days from the date you filed your complaint, if the Department has not issued a final decision and no appeal has been filed.
 
You also have the right to file a civil action within 90 calendar days of your receipt of the EEOC's decision on your appeal, or after 180 calendar days of filing an appeal if the EEOC has not issued a decision.
 
You will continue to receive specific information about your rights and responsibilities in the complaint process as your complaint progresses. If at any time you have questions regarding the process, you may contact (name of EEO Person) at (telephone number).
 

Sincerely,
 
 
Chief, Office for Equal Opportunity
 

Enclosure - EEOC Appeal Form 573
cc: Complainant or Complainant's Representative Complaint File






New Incident That is Part of the Existing Claim

 

Memorandum
 
To: EEO Investigator
 
From: Chief, Office for Equal Opportunity
 
Subject: New Incident in Support of the Complaint of Discrimination
 

You have been assigned to investigate the complaint of discrimination filed against the (Bureau) by (name of complainant), (docket number). On (M/D/Y) , the Complainant brought to our attention new incident(s) that provide additional evidence in support of the claim raised in the complaint currently under investigation. The additional evidence involves the following:
 
(Identify the new incident(s) with specificity and clarity)
 
We are authorizing you to incorporate the new incident(s) and the facts surrounding them in the investigation. You must investigate the new incident(s) thoroughly along with the original claim(s) raised by the Complainant.
 
Should you have any questions, please contact me immediately at (name of person to contact) at (telephone number).
 

cc: Complainant

Complainant's representative Complaint File
 




New Incident that Raises a New Claim Like or Related to the Pending Claim

CERTIFIED MAIL

RETURN RECEIPT REQUESTED
 
In Reply Refer to: 

(Docket Number)
 
Address
 
 
Dear Addressee:
 
This letter is to acknowledge receipt of the new claims of discrimination you filed against the agency on (M/D/Y) . The new claims have been identified as:
 
(Identify with specificity and clarity the new claim(s) of discrimination)
 
We have determined that the above claims are like or related to the original claim(s) you raised in complaint docket number XXX- - , dated M/D/Y , in that they add to or clarify the original claim and could have reasonably been expected to grow out of the investigation of the original claim. Therefore, we are amending your complaint XXX- - to include the new claims identified above.
 
As you know, we are required to complete the investigation of complaints within 180 days of the filing of the complaint unless there is a written agreement to extend the time period. Since your original complaint is now amended, we are adjusting the deadline for completing the investigation to 180 days from the filing of the amendment or 360 days from the filing of the original complaint. 29 C.F.R. 1614.106(e)(2)
 
You still have the right to request a hearing with an Administrative Judge of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 180 days after the filing of your original complaint. If you request a hearing with the EEOC, the Administrative Judge may develop the record through discovery and the hearing process, or utilize other means within his or her discretion to ensure that the amended complaint is properly addressed.
 
Should you have any questions regarding the processing of your complaint, please contact (name of EEO Person) at (telephone number).
 
cc: Complainant or Complainant's representative

EEO Investigator

Complaint File

 



Report of Investigation Checklist



_____ Correct Name of Complainant:

_____ Correct Docket Number(s)

_____ Copy of Complaint

_____ Copy of EEO Counselor's Report

_____ Acknowledgment and/or acceptance letter

_____ If partial dismissal, letter dismissing claims and supporting documentation

_____ Affidavit of Complainant

_____ Affidavit of Primary Witness(es); statement must include a response to each claim

_____ Affidavit of Supplemental Witnesses
 
 

Affidavits of witnesses contain:

_____ a thorough review of the circumstances under which the alleged discrimination occurred

_____ a description of the treatment of members of the Complainant's group as compared with the treatment of other similarly situated employees

_____ each claim has been discussed thoroughly; individually, and

_____ all witnesses have been asked to respond to claims they have knowledge of

_____ Rebuttal Statement of Complainant
 
 

Documents

_____ Related DOI/Bureau policies

_____ Related federal regulations

_____ Comparative data on each witness: e.g., if case based on race, each witness must be asked to identify his/her race, etc.

_____ Relational Organization Chart with names, position titles, grade levels, comparative data

_____ Statistical Evidence or Survey of the Environment

_____ Supporting documents: e.g., merit promotion file if the claim involves non-selection; performance appraisals of complainant and similarly situated employees if the claim involves performance rating

_____ Documents of comparative employees with the identification of the individuals by alleged basis (race, sex, age, etc.)

_____ Documentation on the question of remedies: complainant's interim earnings or subsequent promotions, compensatory damages, or other mitigating factors
 


Compilation

_____ Summary of Investigative Record (contains no conclusion on the merits)

_____ Documents are readable

_____ Documents in the ROI should not be sanitized.

_____ Affidavits are signed

_____ Pages are numbered

_____ Includes index to documents and exhibits

_____ File is tabbed and indexed

_____ Binder is sturdy
 
 






ROI Letter and Election Form & ROI Letter for Mixed Case


Certified Mail

Return Receipt Requested
 
Docket Number
 
Address
 
Dear Addressee:
 
The Report of Investigation (ROI) and Summary regarding your complaint of discrimination(XXX- - ) is enclosed for your review and retention. Please read this letter carefully. It explains your rights and responsibilities in further processing of your complaint.

Although there is no pledge of confidentiality for witnesses submitting sworn statements, such statements and other related documents contained in the ROI are not public documents and may not be publicly disclosed. You are required to safe-guard this information and use it only in connection with the processing of your Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaint.
 
With the issuance of the ROI, you have the right to request a hearing before an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) Administrative Judge (AJ), or to request a Final Agency Decision, without a hearing. If you request a hearing, an EEOC Administrative Judge will conduct the hearing and a final decision regarding your case.
 
If you elect to have a hearing, you are required to certify to the AJ that you sent a copy of the hearing request to the Department. Your request for a hearing should be made directly to the EEOC and sent to the following address:
 
Address for the appropriate EEOC Field Office
 
A copy of your request for a hearing should also be provided to:
 
Address for the Bureau/Office
 
The hearing is an adjudicatory proceeding that completes the process of developing a full and appropriate record. The Administrative Judge will assume full responsibility for the adjudication of the complaint, including overseeing the development of the record. See 29 C.F.R. 1614.109 for more information about the hearing process.
 
If you request a final agency decision without a hearing, the Director, OEO will issue the decision within 60 calendar days of its receipt of your request.
 
If you are not satisfied with the final agency decision, you may appeal the decision to the EEOC within 30 calendar days of your receipt of the decision, with a copy of the appeal to the Director, OEO. Your appeal must be mailed to:
 
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
Post Office Box 19848
Washington, D.C. 20036
 
or, you may hand deliver your appeal to the EEOC at the following address:
 
Office of Federal Operations
Appellate Review Programs
1801 L Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20507
 
or, you may fax your appeal to the EEOC at (202) 663-7022.
 
You have the right to file a civil action in an appropriate U.S. District Court after 180 calendar days from the date you filed your complaint, if the Department has not issued a final decision and no appeal has been filed.
 
You also have the right to file a civil action within 90 calendar days of your receipt of the EEOC's decision on your appeal, or after 180 calendar days of filing an appeal if the EEOC has not issued a decision.
 
You will continue to receive specific information about your rights and responsibilities in the complaint process as your complaint progresses. If at any time you have questions regarding the process, you may contact (name of EEO Person) at (telephone number).
 

Sincerely,
 
 
 
Chief, Office for Equal Opportunity
 

Enclosures - ROI Notice of Selection
 

cc: Complainant or Complainant's Representative

Complaint File





Election Form

TO: Address for the Bureau/Office
 
FROM: Addressee

SUBJECT: NOTICE OF SELECTION - (XXX- - )
 
I am returning the selection form regarding the processing of my complaint. I have made the following selection: 

  1. I hereby request a hearing before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Administrative Judge and I have sent and certified a copy to the Department of the Interior.

  2. I request a Final Decision from the Department without a hearing..

 
Signature
 

Date
 





Mixed Case - ROI Letter

 
Certified Mail

Return Receipt Requested
 
Docket Number
 
Address
 
Dear Addressee:
 
The Report of Investigation (ROI) and Summary regarding your complaint of discrimination (XXX- - ) is enclosed for your review and retention. Please read this letter carefully. It explains your rights and responsibilities in further processing of your complaint.

Although there is no pledge of confidentiality for witnesses submitting sworn statements, such statements and other related documents contained in the ROI are not public documents and may not be publicly disclosed. You are required to safe-guard this information and use it only in connection with the processing of your Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaint.
 
Since the allegations you raised in(XXX- - ) are appealable to the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), the complaint is considered a "mixed case", and has been processed in accordance with Title 29, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Section 302.
 
The Director, Office for Equal Opportunity (OEO) will now issue a final decision, without a hearing, within forty-five (45) calendar days, from the date that you receive your ROI. If you are not satisfied with the decision, you may file an appeal with the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), not EEOC, within thirty (30) calendar days from the date that you receive the Agency's decision.
 
If a final agency decision is not issued within one hundred-twenty (120) calendar days of the date of filing of the mixed case complaint, you now have the right to file an appeal with the MSPB, as specified at 5 CFR 1201.154(b)(2), or you may file a civil action in an appropriate

U. S. District Court, as specified at 29 CFR 1614.310(a), but not both.
 
If you are dissatisfied with the agency's final decision on the mixed case complaint, you may appeal the mater to the MSPB (not EEOC) within 30 days of receipt of the agency's final decision.
 
You may file a civil action within thirty (30) calendar days of your receipt of the Agency's decision, if no appeal has been filed with MSPB.
 
You may also file a civil action after one hundred-twenty (120) calendar days from the date that you file an appeal with the MSPB, if the MSPB has not issued a decision.
 
If you file a civil action, you must specifically name Bruce Babbitt, Secretary of the Interior, as defendant. Failure to do so may result in the loss of any judicial redress to which you may be entitled. It is important to note that the filing of a civil action will terminate processing of the appeal.
 
If you have any questions regarding this matter, you may reach (name of EEO Person) at (telephone number).
 
Sincerely,



Chief, Office for Equal Opportunity
 
Enclosures - ROI
 
cc: Complainant or Complainant's Representative

Complaint File