Fedweek

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The EEOC’s new report on age discrimination complaints in the federal workplace identifies several factors whose presence or absence are linked strongly to the likelihood of such complaints arising.

One factor is what it called “perceptions of fairness” shown in indexes of employees’ general job satisfaction, confidence in agency leadership, and perceptions of workplace inclusion through the annual Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey; higher ratings in each “are associated with fewer age complaints,” it said.

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The first index reflects answers to questions regarding whether employees view their organization as a good place to work and their general satisfaction with their job, pay, and organization; the second on perceived competency of agency leadership, including the leadership’s knowledge, whether the leadership fosters a results-oriented culture and its ability to manage talent; and the third on fairness, openness, cooperativeness, supportiveness and empowerment.

The report said, though, that an even stronger indicator is whether the top agency EEO official reports directly to the agency head, which it said is the case at three-fifths of agencies.

“When total workforce, total complaints, and number of EEO staff is the same, agencies with a director reporting directly to the agency head are less likely to experience an age complaint,” it said.

The EEOC added that another contributor its own oversight of federal agencies through the type of government-wide directives with no counterpart in the private sector.

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