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Highlights

Hispanic representation in the federal workforce has historically been lower than in the Civilian Labor Force (CLF). Understanding factors affecting representation is important to developing and maintaining a high-quality and inclusive workforce. In this report, GAO identifies and analyzes factors affecting Hispanic representation in the federal workforce, examines oversight roles of EEOC and OPM, and provides illustrations of selected federal agencies' efforts with respect to Hispanic representation. GAO constructed a multivariate logistic regression model, with advice from experts, to determine how factors affected the likelihood of Hispanics and non-Hispanics being in the federal versus nonfederal workforce. GAO's analyses are not intended to and do not show the existence or absence of discrimination in the federal workforce.

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Recommendations

Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Office of Personnel Management The Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) should include citizenship in their annual comparisons of representation in the federal workforce to the CLF. To help ensure consistency, both agencies should agree upon a single source of citizenship data.
Closed - Implemented
On November 29, 2012, the Census Bureau released its 2006-2010 Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Tabulation (formally known as the Census Special EEO File), which serves as the primary external benchmark for comparing the race, ethnicity, and gender composition of an organization's internal workforce with the analogous external labor market, within a specified geography and job category. At the direction of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Department of Justice, and Department of Labor (the four sponsoring agencies), the Census Bureau added citizenship as a comparator in the EEO Tabulation. Specifically, the Bureau included various civilian labor force (CLF) measures based on US citizens only (the change required by the recommendations). In January 2014, OPM issued a report, Federal Equal Opportunity Recruitment Program for Fiscal Year 2014, to Congress. The report compares employment in the federal workforce by race, national origin, gender, and disability to the civilian labor force. In this report, OPM included a comparison to the citizenship-based CLF for Hispanics using data from the new EEO Tabulation.
Office of Personnel Management The Director of OPM should assess the extent of participation by racial and ethnic groups in student employment programs--Student Career Experience Program (SCEP), Federal Career Intern Program (FCIP), and Presidential Management Fellows (PMF)--to help agencies maximize the use of these programs in their overall strategic workforce plan. This effort should include analyzing participation in, and conversion rates to, permanent positions from these programs and reporting governmentwide and agency-specific demographic data for the different racial and ethnic groups reflecting participation in, and rates of conversion to, permanent employment from these programs. These data are in addition to the data already reported on these programs in its reports, such as in its statistical reports on Hispanic employment and in the Fact Book.
Closed - Not Implemented
In June 2015, OPM officials notified GAO that when such data are available, they expect to begin analyzing and reporting on participation rates in and conversions to permanent employment from student employement programs (now collectively known as the Pathways programs) by racial and ethnic groups. However, OPM officials were not able to estimate when such data would be available. As a result, GAO is closing this recommendation as not implemented.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission The Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) should include citizenship in their annual comparisons of representation in the federal workforce to the CLF. To help ensure consistency, both agencies should agree upon a single source of citizenship data.
Closed - Implemented
On November 29, 2012, the Census Bureau released its 2006-2010 Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Tabulation (formally known as the Census Special EEO File), which serves as the primary external benchmark for comparing the race, ethnicity, and gender composition of an organization's internal workforce with the analogous external labor market, within a specified geography and job category. At the direction of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Department of Justice, and Department of Labor (the four sponsoring agencies), the Census Bureau added citizenship as a comparator in the EEO Tabulation. Specifically, the Bureau included various civilian labor force (CLF) measures based on U.S. citizens only (the change required by the recommendations) in the EEO Tabulation. Then, in July 2013, EEOC instructed federal agencies to account for citizenship in their Management Directive (MD)-715 analyses, which compare representation levels to CLF benchmarks. This comparison is one method of identifying potential barriers to EEO. To assist agencies in using the new EEO Tabulation, EEOC drafted guidance and conducted four free webinars on how to retrieve and analyze these data, noting that agencies must use the citizenship filter for all MD-715 tables. EEOC used the citizenship-based CLF from the new EEO Tabulation as the national CLF benchmark in fiscal year 2013 MD-715 tables, which serve as the basis for EEOC?s annual comparison of representation in the federal workforce to the CLF.
Office of Personnel Management The Director of OPM and the Chair of EEOC should work with other Consortium agencies and the Census Bureau to incorporate citizenship data into the 2010 Census Special EEO File and incorporate such data into analyses under MD-715, FEORP, and Executive Order No. 13171.
Closed - Implemented
On November 29, 2012, the Census Bureau released its 2006-2010 Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Tabulation (formally known as the Census Special EEO File), which serves as the primary external benchmark for comparing the race, ethnicity, and gender composition of an organization's internal workforce with the analogous external labor market, within a specified geography and job category. At the direction of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Department of Justice, and Department of Labor (the four sponsoring agencies), the Census Bureau added citizenship as a comparator in the EEO Tabulation. Specifically, the Bureau included various civilian labor force (CLF) measures based on US citizens only (the change required by the recommendations). In January 2014, OPM issued a report, Federal Equal Opportunity Recruitment Program for Fiscal Year 2014, to Congress. The report compares employment in the federal workforce by race, national origin, gender, and disability to the civilian labor force. In this report, OPM included a comparison to the citizenship-based CLF for Hispanics using data from the new EEO Tabulation.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission The Director of OPM and the Chair of EEOC should work with other Consortium agencies and the Census Bureau to incorporate citizenship data into the 2010 Census Special EEO File and incorporate such data into analyses under MD-715, FEORP, and Executive Order No. 13171.
Closed - Implemented
On November 29, 2012, the Census Bureau released its 2006-2010 Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Tabulation (formally known as the Census Special EEO File), which serves as the primary external benchmark for comparing the race, ethnicity, and gender composition of an organization's internal workforce with the analogous external labor market, within a specified geography and job category. At the direction of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Department of Justice, and Department of Labor (the four sponsoring agencies), the Census Bureau added citizenship as a comparator in the EEO Tabulation. Specifically, the Bureau included various civilian labor force (CLF) measures based on U.S. citizens only (the change required by the recommendations) in the EEO Tabulation. Then, in July 2013, EEOC instructed federal agencies to account for citizenship in their Management Directive (MD)-715 analyses, which compare representation levels to CLF benchmarks. This comparison is one method of identifying potential barriers to EEO. To assist agencies in using the new EEO Tabulation, EEOC drafted guidance and conducted four free webinars on how to retrieve and analyze these data, noting that agencies must use the citizenship filter for all MD-715 tables. EEOC used the citizenship-based CLF from the new EEO Tabulation as the national CLF benchmark in fiscal year 2013 MD-715 tables, which serve as the basis for EEOC's annual comparison of representation in the federal workforce to the CLF.

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