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Equal Opportunity Directive 2004-21



 U.S. Department of the Interior


Office of the Secretary
Washington, D.C.  20240
July 29, 2004

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY DIRECTIVE 2004-21


To:        Bureau/Office Equal Opportunity Officers
             Office of the Solicitor

From:      Sharon D. Eller, Office of Civil Rights

Subject:   Transmittal of EEOC Administrative Judge Decisions

Effective immediately, all bureaus and offices, including regional and field offices, are to ensure that an original, signed copy (not a duplicate) of all EEOC Administrative Judge Decisions involving Summary Judgments, Closure Orders, Dismissals, Bench Decisions, filings of Civil Actions, all other motions, is provided to the Office of Civil Rights.  A similar Directive was issued in EOD 2001-08, dated March 9, 2001, involving transmittal of files to EEOC for Hearings.  It may be helpful to review EOD 2001-08.

Recently, we have had instances where Administrative Judges (AJ’s) within EEOC’s Field and EEOC District Offices have sent their decisions to regional, field Bureau EEO Offices and to the regional, field offices of the Solicitor, but failed to send an original, signed copy of the decision to the Departmental Office of Civil Rights (OCR). This has been particularly problematic with EEOC’s Washington Field Office.

This has resulted in AJ Decisions becoming final after the regulatory 40 day time frame for issuance of a Final Order has expired.  In one incident, I was unaware that an AJ Decision had even been issued until the complainant had filed an appeal with EEOC’s Office of Federal Operations because our office had “refused to issue a decision”.

 
With the recent passage of the No Fear Act, we are being held accountable for proper, timely processing of complaints.  Please review your procedures in transmitting case files to EEOC and SOL Regional and Field Offices for hearings and revise your procedures as appropriate, to ensure that our office gets an original, signed copy of all AJ Decisions.

Should you have any questions, please contact Melinda Hayden of the OCR staff at (202) 208-5998 (TDD) or e-mail her at Melinda_Hayden@ios.doi.gov.  I appreciate your support of this decision.

Distribution:     All Bureau/Office Equal Opportunity Officers, Office of the Solicitor

Inquiries:          Melinda Hayden, Office for Civil Rights

Expiration:       When Superseded