DHS has identified barriers to greater representation of women, minorities and those with disabilities in its workforce but has not done as well in addressing them, GAO has said.
A report credited the department with taking steps such as comparing workforce data to benchmarks, researching how to conduct outreach to underrepresented groups, attending job fairs at colleges with large populations of such groups and conducting focus group meetings with employees.
It said that the main findings included:
* problems with supervision/management, lack of advancement opportunities, lack of alternate work schedules, insufficient work/life programs, and personal/family related reasons caused higher-than-expected nonretirement separations for white females and several ethnic and racial groups;
* the geographic location of some jobs has contributed to the low hiring rates of racial groups in certain major occupations; and
* medical and physical requirements of law enforcement positons, such as the ability to engage in moderate to arduous physical exertion, limit the eligibility of some applicants with targeted disabilities.
However, it said that DHS does not have complete action plans to address those issues, nor metrics for tracking progress on them, and “certain aspects of components’ EEO programs do not have sufficient funding or staffing.”