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Equal Opportunity Directive 2000-16

United States Department of the Interior

Washington, D.C. 20240


TO:                Bureau/Office Equal Opportunity Officers

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

SUBJECT:    Mandatory Alternative Dispute Resolution Policy-Implementation of Bureau/Office Plans

This Equal Opportunity Directive (EOD) transmits instructions for your implementation of Assistant Secretary Policy, Management and Budget June 7, 2000 policy issuance concerning your mandatory application of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) techniques and resources for the improved management of workplace conflicts, particularly those conflicts involving employee perceptions of discrimination associated with the terms and conditions of their public service employment.

During recent months, the Department has closely assessed reports and other information from each of you regarding the status of complaints for which your organization, the Department, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) have responsibility. We must improve our performance in conflict management and we must accept our responsibility for the elimination of backlogs and for the underlying reasons for the Departments current difficulties associated with your management of workplace conflicts.

While specific ADR implementation plans may vary among your organizations, the fundamental principles, performance expectations, and attitudes for success in the reduction in outstanding and future complaints will not vary in this Department. This means that your responsibilities and the Secretary's subsequent measures of your performance will be based upon positive outcomes, not only in numbers reflecting your improved application of ADR but, equally important, in your substantive, proactive corrections and improvements of specific work environments where the underlying conditions for conflict may exist.

I will report to the Assistant Secretary and to the Secretary during each month concerning your progress or lack thereof, and have been instructed to report also specific examples of your Best Practices" whenever there are clear examples of major accomplishments based on your innovative and forward thinking in the successful implementation and execution of these ADR requirements.  Attachment-I outlines specific guidance to be used in crafting plans tailored to your organizations needs and this guidance represents the minimum required steps for your implementation of the ADR policy communicated in June 7, 2000, memorandum.

I am confident in your ability to reduce workplace conflicts, complaints, and administrative backlogs and, more importantly, to achieve vast improvements in the quality of workplace environments where employment conflicts and charges of discrimination arise.

Attachment- 1

Outline/Instructions for ADR Implementation Plans


        -EEOC-MD 110

        -DOI Instructions:

                 June 7, 2000
                 June 14, 2000

        -Presidential Memorandum May 1, 1998

        -Administrative Dispute Resolution Act, 1996

Action: Official: Date:
1. Communicate Mandatory ADR Policy to all employees and managers.  Bureau Directors  June 30, 2000 
2. Require and review input from field and Headquarters components, including employees and managers.  Bureau Directors  July 15, 2000 
3.Submit draft Bureau/Office plans to Director, OEO for approval.  Bureau Directors  July 20, 2000
4. Implement Bureau/Office ADR plans covering all pending and/or new complaints.  Bureau Directors  Aug. 1,
5.Report on progress bi-weekly.  Bureau Directors  Aug. 15, 2000
6. Evaluate Bureau/Office ADR Compliance.  AS-PMB/OEO  Feb.14, 2001
7. Issue revised instructions as indicated.  AS-PMB/OEO  Mar.15, 2001

DISTRIBUTION: Bureau and Office Equal Opportunity Officers
INQUIRIES: Carolyn M. Burrell, Assistant -Director Complaints Processing and Adjudication,202-208-3442
EXPIRES: When Superseded