Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

You are here: ARS Home / About Us / ODEO / Special Emphasis Program
Special Emphasis Program
headline bar

Office of Outreach, Diversity, and Equal Opportunity (ODEO)

Our Programs

The Special Emphasis Program
The Special Emphasis Program acts as a conduit for communication between the workforce and management, seeking to create a climate of understanding and cooperation. We analyze statistical data concerning the composition of the workforce. We analyse by organization, type of position, and grade of positions in order to identify barriers in those areas which minorities, women and individuals with disabilities are significantly underrepresented. We study issues involved in complaints of discrimination in order to identify patterns of practices, attitudes and other problem areas that result in the denial of equal opportunity for minorities, women, and the disabled in employment, promotion, training, awards, retention and recognition. Our specialists provide leadership to assure equal employment for opportunity for persons regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, age, disability or religion. Finally, or staff assists in the development and execution of affirmative employment goals and establishes timetables for accomplishments of those goals.

Special Emphasis Programs Include:
• Asian American/Pacific Islander Employment Program
Department of Defense Directive 1440.1 authorizes the establishment of the A/PI Program as an integral part of the civilian equal employment opportunity program.Executive Order (E.O.) 13216 amended E.O. 13125 to increase opportunity and improve the quality of life of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AA/PI) through increased participation in Federal programs where they may be under served. The Executive Order establishes the President's Advisory Commission on AA/PIs, and a Federal Interagency Working Group on AA/PIs.Contact Mary Ward,(202) 720-6161 for more information

• Black Employment Program
This program was strengthened through Executive Order 11478, Equal Employment Opportunity in the Federal Government, which established the EEO Program. It is the policy of the Federal government to provide equal opportunity in employment to all individuals regardless of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability, or age. The Black SEP was established to increase the representation of African Americans throughout the workforce. Contact Altheria D. Myers, (202) 720-6161 for more information

• Disability Employment Program
Executive Order 13078 established the National Task Force on Employment of Adults with Disabilities to reduce employment barriers. Executive Order 13164 promotes a Federal workplace that provides reasonable accommodation for employees and applicants with disabilities. Executive Order 13187 established the President's Disability Employment Partnership Board.People with disabilities can be hired through the traditional competitive hiring process or, if they qualify, noncompetitively through the use of excepted service appointing authorities. Excepted service appointments for the disabled were developed to provide opportunities for people with disabilities to circumvent the attitudinal barriers.Contact Mary Ward, (202) 720-6161 for more information.

• Federal Women's Employment Program
In 1967, Executive Order 11375 added gender to the list of prohibited discrimination such as race, color, religion, and national origin. In response to this, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) established the Federal Women's Program (FWP). In 1969, Executive Order 11478 integrated the FWP into the EEO Program and placed it under the direction of EEO for each agency. OPM regulations require that Federal agencies designate a FWP manager to advise the EEO officer on matters affecting the employment and advancement of women. This law also requires that Federal agencies allocate sufficient resources for their Federal Women's Programs.Contact Helena Thompson, (202) 720-6161 for more information.

• Hispanic Employment Program
The Hispanic Employment Program (HEP) is an integral part of the Federal government-wide Equal Employment Opportunity Program under the authority of Executive Order 13171, Hispanic Employment in the Federal Government of October 12, 2001. The goals of the HEP are to work toward enhancing employment opportunities for Hispanic employees and individuals seeking Federal employment and ensure Hispanic Americans are represented throughout the workforce at all grade levels and occupations.Contact Debra Vandergrift, (202) 720-6161 for more information.

• Native American/Alaskan Native Program
Former President George W. Bush reaffirmed the previous administration's Native American Program of Support for Tribal Colleges and Universities in Executive Order 13270. He reiterated the unique relationship between the United States and the Indian tribes and also acknowledged the special relationship between the United States and Alaskan Natives. Bush also declared this Nation's commitment to opportunity extends to NA/ANs, and he expects this order will provide job training and other career-building programs for NA/ANs.ContactSheila Cheeks, (202) 720-6161 for more information.

Special Emphasis Awareness Activities Include:
• Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Pride Month
2010 Pride - Presidential Proclamation
-- 2010 Pride Program - June 17, 2010,Jefferson Auditorium - South Building
-- 2010 Pride GLBT History Series FNS

• Hispanic Heritage Month

• Asian American Heritage Month Ceremony

• National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Special Emphasis Past Event Highlights:
2009 Asian American Heritage Month Ceremony
• Ceremony Broadcast - CLOSED Captioned (TRT:57:07)
• Ceremony Broadcast - Uncaptioned (TRT:57:07)

• National Disability Employment Awareness Month:
-- Webinar:"Summary of the Resonable Accommodation Process","What the USDA Target Center Can Do For You"fromOctober 15, 2009

•Hispanic Heritage Month:
-- Conquering Challenges to Leadership, from September 30, 2009click to download ConquerChallengeLeaderFlyer.pdf

Last Modified: 11/21/2014
Footer Content Back to Top of Page