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External Compliance Program

The External Compliance Program oversees and monitors the Department’s compliance with statutes that prohibit discrimination in federally conducted programs and federally assisted programs. In carrying out this function, the Office of Civil Rights, External Compliance Program, receives and processes complaints from individuals who believe they have been discriminated against on the basis of race, color, national origin (limited English proficiency), age, sex, disability, or reprisal in Federally conducted and Federally assisted programs or activities.  Federally conducted programs are those that are directly administered by the Department of Commerce.  Federally assisted programs are those programs that receive Federal financial assistance.

Race, Color, and National Origin Discrimination, Including Meaningful Access for Persons Who Are Limited English Proficient

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Executive Order 13166 prohibit exclusion from participation in, denial of benefits of, and discrimination under Federally-assisted programs on the grounds of race, color, or national origin, including limited English proficiency.  Executive Order 13166 requires Federal agencies to ensure meaningful access to Federal programs for limited English proficient persons.  DOC has promulgated regulations to effectuate the applicable provisions of Title VI.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits exclusion from participation in, denial of the benefits of, or discrimination on the basis of sex in any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.  DOC has promulgated regulations to effectuate the applicable provisions of Title IX.

The Public Works and Economic Development Act of 1965, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 3123, prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any project funded under that statute.

The Public Works Employment Act of 1976, 42 U.S.C. § 6709, also prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any project funded under that statute.

Disability Discrimination

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibits exclusion from participation in, denial of benefits of, and discrimination under Federally assisted programs on the grounds of disability.  DOC has promulgated regulations to implement section 504 with respect to programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance.

Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 requires Federal agencies to ensure that individuals with disabilities have access to and use of information and data comparable to the access and use of the information by members of the public who are not individuals with disabilities.  DOC has promulgated regulations to effectuate the applicable provisions of Section 508.

Age Discrimination

The Age Discrimination Act of 1975 prohibits discrimination on the basis of age in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance.

How to File a Complaint

  • Complaints about race, color, national origin, age, sex, or disability discrimination involving recipients of Federal financial assistance from the Department of Commerce and its Bureaus should be filed with the following: 

Tinisha Agramonte, Director, Office of Civil Rights

U.S. Department of Commerce, Room 6058

1401 Constitution Avenue, N.W.

Washington, D.C.  20230

 

OCR staff are also available to provide assistance with filing complaints by calling (202) 482-0625.

  • Complaints about disability discrimination in programs conducted by the Department of Commerce and its bureaus should be filed with the following:

File your complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Officer of the Bureau conducting the program or the Director, Office of Civil Rights, at the above address.

OCR staff are available to provide assistance with filing complaints by calling (202) 482‑0625. 

 

·      Complaints should be in writing and should contain the following information:

o   Sufficient information to understand the facts that led the complainant to believe discrimination occurred and when the discrimination took place

o   A way to contact the complainant (a mailing address, and if applicable, a telephone number and e-mail address)

o   Identification of the person or group injured by the alleged discrimination

o   Identification of the person or organization alleged to have discriminated

o   The basis for the alleged discrimination, e.g., race, national origin, or disability

 

Bureaus and Offices