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Increasing Federal Employment of Individuals with Disabilities

President Barack Obama Issues Executive Order — Increasing Federal
Employment of Individuals with Disabilities

The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
July 26, 2010

Executive Order– Increasing Federal Employment of Individuals with
Disabilities

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws
of the United States of America, and in order to establish the Federal
Government as a model employer of individuals with disabilities, it is
hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Policy. Approximately 54 million Americans are living with a
disability. The Federal Government has an important interest in reducing
discrimination against Americans living with a disability, in eliminating
the stigma associated with disability, and in encouraging Americans with
disabilities to seek employment in the Federal workforce. Yet Americans
with disabilities have an employment rate far lower than that of Americans
without disabilities, and they are underrepresented in the Federal
workforce. Individuals with disabilities currently represent just over 5
percent of the nearly 2.5 million people in the Federal workforce, and
individuals with targeted disabilities (as defined below) currently
represent less than 1 percent of that workforce.

On July 26, 2000, in the final year of his administration, President Clinton
signed Executive Order 13163, calling for an additional 100,000 individuals
with disabilities to be employed by the Federal Government over 5 years.
Yet few steps were taken to implement that Executive Order in subsequent
years.

As the Nation’s largest employer, the Federal Government must become a model
for the employment of individuals with disabilities. Executive departments
and agencies (agencies) must improve their efforts to employ workers with
disabilities through increased recruitment, hiring, and retention of these
individuals. My Administration is committed to increasing the number of
individuals with disabilities in the Federal workforce through compliance
with Executive Order 13163 and achievement of the goals set forth therein
over 5 years, including specific goals for hiring individuals with targeted
disabilities.

Sec. 2. Recruitment and Hiring of Individuals with Disabilities. (a)
Within 60 days of the date of this order, the Director of the Office of
Personnel Management, in consultation with the Secretary of Labor, the Chair
of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Director of the
Office of Management and Budget, shall design model recruitment and hiring
strategies for agencies seeking to increase their employment of people with
disabilities and develop mandatory training programs for both human
resources personnel and hiring managers on the employment of individuals
with disabilities.

(b) Within 120 days of the date the Office of Personnel Management sets
forth strategies and programs required under subsection (a), each agency
shall develop an agency specific plan for promoting employment opportunities
for individuals with disabilities. The plan shall be developed in
consultation with and, as appropriate, subject to approval by the Director
of the Office of Personnel Management and the Director of the Office of
Management and Budget, and shall, consistent with law, include performance
targets and numerical goals for employment of individuals with disabilities
and sub goals for employment of individuals with targeted disabilities.
(c) Each agency shall designate a senior-level agency official to be
accountable for enhancing employment opportunities for individuals with
disabilities and individuals with targeted disabilities within the agency,
consistent with law, and for meeting the goals of this order. This
official, among other things, shall be accountable for developing and
implementing the agency’s plan under subsection (b), creating recruitment
and training programs for employment of individuals with disabilities and
targeted disabilities, and coordinating employment counseling to help match
the career aspirations of individuals with disabilities to the needs of the
agency.
(d) In implementing their plans, agencies, to the extent permitted by law,
shall increase utilization of the Federal Government’s Schedule A excepted
service hiring authority for persons with disabilities and increase
participation of individuals with disabilities in internships, fellowships,
and training and mentoring programs.

(e) The Office of Personnel Management shall assist agencies with the
implementation of their plans. The Director of the Office of Personnel
Management, in consultation with the Director of the Office of Management
and Budget, shall implement a system for reporting regularly to the
President, the heads of agencies, and the public on agencies’ progress in
implementing their plans and the objectives of this order. The Office of
Personnel Management, to the extent permitted by law, shall compile and post
on its website Government wide statistics on the hiring of individuals with
disabilities.

Sec. 3. Increasing Agencies’ Retention and Return to Work of Individuals
with Disabilities. (a) The Director of the Office of Personnel Management,
in consultation with the Secretary of Labor and the Chair of the Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission, shall identify and assist agencies in
implementing strategies for retaining Federal workers with disabilities in
Federal employment including, but not limited to, training, the use of
centralized funds to provide reasonable accommodations, increasing access to
appropriate accessible technologies, and ensuring the accessibility of
physical and virtual workspaces.

(b) Agencies shall make special efforts, to the extent permitted by law, to
ensure the retention of those who are injured on the job. Agencies shall
work to improve, expand, and increase successful return to work outcomes for
those of their employees who sustain work-related injuries and illnesses, as
defined under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA), by increasing
the availability of job accommodations and light or limited duty jobs,
removing disincentives for FECA claimants to return to work, and taking
other appropriate measures. The Secretary of Labor, in consultation with
the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, shall pursue innovative
re employment strategies and develop policies, procedures, and structures
that foster improved return to work outcomes, including by pursuing overall
reform of the FECA system. The Secretary of Labor shall also propose
specific outcome measures and targets by which each agency’s progress in
carrying out return to work and FECA claims processing efforts can be
assessed.
Sec. 4. Definitions. (a) “Disability” shall be defined as set forth in
the ADA Amendments Act of 2008.

(b) “Targeted disability” shall be defined as set forth on the form for
self identification of disability, Standard Form 256 (SF 256), issued by the
Office of Personnel Management, or any replacements, updates, or revisions
thereto.

(c) Not less than 1 year after the date of this order and in consultation
with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Labor,
and the Office of Management and Budget, the Office of Personnel Management
shall review the effectiveness of the definition of targeted disability set
forth in SF 256 and replace, update, or revise it as appropriate.
Sec. 5. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed
to impair or otherwise affect:

(i) authority granted by law to a department or agency, or the head
thereof; or

(ii) functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget
relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and
subject to the availability of appropriations, and shall not be construed to
require any Federal employee to disclose disability status involuntarily.

(c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or
benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any
party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its
officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

BARACK OBAMA
THE WHITE HOUSE,
July 26, 2010.

Source: United States Department of Labor ODEP – In Focus Update

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/executive-order-increasing-federal-employment-individuals-with-disabilities

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