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Civil Rights OCR Bulletins

Office of Civil Rights (OCR) Bulletin No. 1: Gender Identity and Gender Expressions Protection

The OCR Bulletin No. 1: Gender Identity and Gender Expression Protections affirms the Department’s commitment to building an inclusive workplace, supporting our transgender employees, and preventing discrimination based on gender identity. OCR developed this bulletin with feedback and input from Commerce Pride.

OCR Bulletin No. 1 provides common definitions, identifies the roles and responsibilities of different offices, and provides helpful general guidance on several topics, including changing records, the use of names and pronouns, ensuring access to appropriate facilities, the hiring and promotion process and dress and appearance standards.

The bulletin also provides a procedure for addressing typical requests for workplace accommodations and/or modifications that may arise during an individual's gender transition. To assist individuals with developing transition plans, the bulletin also requires OCR and bureau EEO/DEIA Offices to designate coordinators with the goal of facilitating a seamless and efficient gender transition process for transitioning employees and their supervisors while mitigating the risk of potential violations of Title VII. 

Two helpful documents are attached to the bulletin: a sample transition plan and a sample list of official and unofficial workplace records. These documents serve to assist employees and the coordinators to navigate the gender transition process. For questions about the bulletin below, please contact OCR at [email protected].

If you work for ITA, NOAA, Census, PTO, or NIST, please contact your bureau’s EEO/DEIA Office for information about your local coordinator.

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OCR Bulletin No. 1: Gender Identity and Gender Expression Protections 350.15 KB