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Complaints Program

The Complaints and ADR Programs are responsible for ensuring that CNIC employees have a fair, neutral, timely and responsive avenue of redress when they believe they have been subjected to discrimination based on their race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, and/or reprisal for having participated in protected Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) activity.  These ADR program is also designed to help resolve any type of workplace dispute.  The goal of the Complaints and ADR Programs is to resolve issues at the lowest possible level and to get beyond the issues, so that employees and managers can more quickly return to the CNIC’s mission.  The Pre-Complaint/ADR Program Manager serves as a technical advisor, and is responsible for:

  • Ensuring that Informal Discrimination Complaints are quickly addressed;
  • Determining if the issues raised are appropriate for ADR;
  • Scheduling mediation and providing appropriate notice to complainants, management officials, and witnesses;
  • Providing prompt, fair, and impartial processing of complaints;
  • Communicating the Agency’s policies regarding Equal Opportunity, Sexual Harassment and ADR through appropriate training to the CNIC workforce.

The Complaints and ADR Programs are regulated by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, The Age Discrimination and Employment Act of 1967, The Equal Pay Act of 1963, The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008.  The 29 Code of Federal Regulation Part 1614 and the EEOC Management Directive (MD) 110 provide guidance and implementing instructions regarding Agency complaint and ADR programs. 

EEO Complaint Process

Phase 1 - Informal Complaint Process

  • Once an alleged discriminatory event occurs, you must contact an EEO Counselor within 45 calendar days of the alleged discrimination or in the case of a personnel action, within 45 calendar days from the effective date of the action
  • An EEO Counselor will be assigned to explain your rights and responsibilities in the EEO complaint process
  • If you choose to elect traditional counseling, the EEO Counselor has 30 calendar days to conduct a limited inquiry regarding the complaint
  • You will be provided an opportunity to elect to participate in the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) process

Do you have questions regarding the Informal Complaint Process? Contact Us

Phase 2 - Formal Complaint Process

  • If your complaint is not resolved in the informal phase, the EEO Counselor will issue you a Notice of Right to File a Formal Discrimination Complaint
  • Upon receipt of the Notice of Right to File a Formal Discrimination Complaint, you have 15 calendar days to file a formal EEO complaint with the EEO office
  • Once you have filed a formal complaint, the CNIC HQ EEO office will review the complaint and make a determination to accept and/or dismiss the complaint
  • If the complaint is accepted, an investigation will be conducted. The agency has 180 days from the day the formal complaint of discrimination was filed to complete the investigation
  • When the investigation is completed, the agency will issue a notice giving you two choices:  (1) either request a hearing before an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Administrative Judge or (2) request the agency to issue a final agency decision as to whether the discrimination occurred

Do you have questions regarding the Formal Complaint Process? Contact the CNIC HQ EEO office by phone, individuals call (202) 433-8229 and leave a message; or they can send an email.

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