On October 3, 2019, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) published a notice in the Federal Register proposing changes to the required voluntary self-identification form that all federal contractors and subcontractors use when soliciting disability status from applicants and employees. The current form expires in January of 2020.
Among the more notable changes is the removal of the reasonable accommodation language, which results in a shortened, one-page form. OFCCP removed this language because it “created confusion among applicants and employees who thought that completing the form automatically referred them for a reasonable accommodation.” The proposed form also alphabetizes, updates, and expands the list of disabilities. Examples of disabilities provided by OFCCP in the proposed form that are not in the current self-identification form include the following:
- Autoimmune disorders; for example, lupus, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis
- Low vision
- Cardiovascular or heart disease
- Hard of hearing benefiting from hearing aid(s)
- Gastrointestinal disorders; for example, Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease
- Nervous system conditions; for example, migraine headaches, Parkinson’s disease
OFCCP’s proposed form moves the applicant/employee name and date to the top of form. It also contains new language regarding the goal of having individuals with disabilities comprise 7 percent of the workforce, the requirement to ask employees to update their disability status at least every five years, promises that all information will be kept confidential, and provides OFCCP’s website for those who would like more information.
The comment period on the proposed form closes on December 2, 2019.
Ogletree Deakins’ Affirmative Action and OFCCP Compliance Practice Group will report on any further developments with regard to the disability self-identification form on the firm’s Affirmative Action/OFCCP blog.