Why Having an Affirmative Action Plan is Crucial for Federal Contractors

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Does your business have an affirmative action plan? If not, or you’re not sure, then your company could pay a big price. 

All contractors or subcontractors fulfilling contracts for the executive branch of the federal government who meet certain requirements must follow the affirmative action clause.

Affirmative action plans are a requirement for Federal Contractors. They ensure that employees are not discriminated against. Don’t let your business get caught without one. Continue reading for why an affirmative action plan is crucial for federal contractors.

What Is an Affirmative Action Plan?

It doesn’t matter if you’re a small or large business. You must have an affirmative action plan if you are providing goods and services to the federal government. This includes businesses that offer this through direct or indirect means.

This plan makes sure you are providing employment opportunities to all people. It ensures equality regardless of their race, gender, creed, or status as a disabled person. Not following this compliance can lead to serious penalties. 

Don’t Pay the Price

In April of 2020, the Valero Refinery Company was forced to pay $362,500, plus interest. This was after hiring discrimination was found to be prevalent since 2014. The company received its routine evaluation by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP). 

The OFCCP is in charge of enforcing affirmative action programs and serves under the umbrella of the U.S. Department of Labor. 

After the evaluation, they found that the company discriminated against Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American operator trainee applicants. Valero was also required to provide seven operator trainee job opportunities to Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American applicants. 

This Is Serious 

The OFCCP also upholds laws against federal government contractors and subcontractors from discriminating against individuals because of disability, race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, religion, national origin, or status as a protected veteran.

Even if you think your company is complying with these laws, you must have an Affirmative Action Plan. The repercussions of not having one outweigh the time it takes to ensure you are complying with the law.

There are many layers of Executive Order 11246. It goes beyond employing certain people. Affirmative action helps to create a workplace of equal opportunity. It must be even more active than an “equal opportunity employer.”

Do You Need an Affirmative Action Plan?

If you own a small business you may need an affirmative action plan and not know it. Even if your company doesn’t have a formal contract with an executive branch department. You might still need to have an affirmative action plan.

This is true if your business supplies items to a company that does have a federal contract, your sales exceed $50,000, and you have more than 50 employees. If you have under 50 employees then you don’t need to have a written affirmative action plan.

There are many other ways to determine if you need to have an affirmative action plan. Don’t risk being caught without one. It’s important to reach out to the experts who can help you get started.

Protect Your Employees and Business

Now that you understand the importance of having an affirmative action plan, you may need to get started on making sure you’re in compliance. When you have an affirmative action plan, you are able to start recruiting strategies that focus on underrepresented groups. 

If you need help putting together your plan and getting started, reach out to the professionals. We’ve been helping clients prepare their affirmative action plans since 1979. Contact us today to learn more about protecting your business.

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