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ATP Submits Comments to the

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity



   In July, ATP submitted comments to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") related to compliance with Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ("ADA"). An Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking ("ANRM") concerns the obligation of each federal sector agency and department to be a "model employer of individuals with disabilities."  The EEOC invited public comment on a set of questions to help guide its deliberations in developing proposed regulations.

"Although the EEOC requested comments on seven aspects of what it means to be a model federal employer of individuals with disabilities -- and although the ANPRM is limited to federal employers, it is important for ATP to weigh in because at some point we anticipate that the EEOC will establish regulations covering private sector employers," explained ATP's Legislative Counsel Alan J. Thiemann. He added that ATP's comments focus solely on one question posed by the EEOC regarding specific hiring policies and practices, especially in regard to the use of standardized tests. "We just believed that the 'examples' of practices suggested in the EEOC's question miss the target and would do little, if anything, to enhance the ability of a federal employer to become a model employer of individuals with disabilities," Thiemann noted.

In the comments, which were submitted by ATP CEO Dr. William G. Harris, ATP articulates five principles that the Association contends must be respected and considered: 1. Whatever regulations the EEOC adopts must be consistent with current professional standards. 2. Any eventual regulations must be consistent with current ADA and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 ("ADAAA"). 3. The regulations must be consistent across all personnel screening systems commonly recognized or used by the federal government. 4. The EEOC must clarify that , as long as the employer is acting in accord with relevant laws and regulations, there is nothing preventing the use of unique and responsive solutions proposed by qualified professionals including industrial/organizational psychologists and other human resource practitioners. 5. The EEOC must not view the ANPRM as an opportunity to mandate screening and selection policies, but rather as an opportunity to promote research and development of new methods and technologies.

Within the comments ATP proposes specific recommendations for best practices with respect to the use of employment tests and assessments in five areas: Accessibility; Accommodations; Alternate measures; Assistive strategies and technologies; and Scoreing and decision-making.  To read the comments in their entirety, click here: ATP comments to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC")