Purpose of Equal Opportunity
The purpose of equal opportunity is to provide equal treatment and employment opportunity. As a function of leadership and command the EO program provides resources to ensure successful and efficient operations. Furthermore, it communicates policies and procedures to all Air Force members, military and civilian.
Objective of the Equal Opportunity Program
One objective of EO is to assist the commander in a continuous campaign to eradicate unlawful discrimination and harassment from the workplace by taking proactive steps to ensure all available efforts are in place. These efforts include human relations education, commander's calls, enlisted and officer professional development seminars, and information relevant to Air Force policy regarding unlawful discrimination and harassment.
Another objective of EO is to foster a positive human relations environment utilizing the Human Relations Climate Assessment Subcommittee to evaluate positives and negatives in the local environment, as well as to utilize Human Relations Education to guarantee employees and management understand the need to a positive human relations environment.
The equal opportunity complaint process is a means for military members, family members and retirees to present allegations of unlawful discrimination and sexual harassment to the offending party, someone in a position of authority or both.
The informal complaint resolution process is an alternative to making formal complaints. This process empowers the individual to decide on the best or most appropriate means to address and resolve concerns. The informal process is for those who elect not to file a formal complaint.
Note: Individuals may have the option to file a formal complaint if they are not satisfied with the informal process.
When individuals believe concerns about unlawful discrimination or sexual harassment can only be addressed through filing a formal complaint, the EO formal complaint process is available.
Timeline: Individuals should submit formal allegations of unlawful discrimination or sexual harassment no later than 60 days after the alleged offense. If the allegations are submitted after that time, the complainant must provide sufficient justification or extenuating circumstances to the EO staff for review and approval by the installation commander.
The equal opportunity complaint process is a means for U.S. citizens who are current or former employees or applicants for civilian employment to present allegations of unlawful discrimination and sexual harassment to the offending party, someone in a position of authority or both.
Aggrieved persons who believe they have been discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or handicap must consult an EO counselor prior to filing a complaint to attempt to informally resolve the matter.
Where there is no resolution at the informal stage the aggrieved can file a formal complaint. This must be done in writing within 15 days of receipt of the Notice of Final Interview from the formal complaint process. More information will be explained from the EO office.
Timeline: Individuals' initial contract must be within 45 calendar days of the date of the matter alleged to be discriminatory or, in the case of personal action, within 45 days of the date of the effective date or when the person becomes aware of the action.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
Military: The EO director has the option to use Alternative Dispute Resolution techniques in military EO complaints. The purpose of ADR techniques is to lead to resolution of conflict of formal or informal complaints at the earliest and lowest level.
Civilian: The ADR for civilian EO complaints encompasses mediation, facilitation, structured negotiation, and other collaborative problem solving techniques or combinations of each technique.
The goal of ADR methods is to settle Equal Employment Opportunity complaints as early and at the lowest level possible. Individuals are encouraged to voluntarily and constructively participate in ADR to resolve EEO complains whenever feasible and fitting.
Find more information on the Air Force Alternative Dispute Resolution Program HERE.
Unit Climate Assessments
Unit Climate Assessments are assistunit commanders in the assessment of their unit's human relations climate and to make recommendations for improvements. Both positive and negative factors that impact unit effectiveness and the HRC are assessed with methods approved by the unit commander. These methods may be used individually or in combination and include survey distribution and analysis, individual interviews, observations, focus groups, and unit trend data and reports.
Types of Unit Climate Assessments:
Type I UCA is the primary assessment method for assessing an organization's HRC. It includes unit trend analysis, survey access code distribution, survey analysis, individual interviews or focus groups derived from the survey analysis and a final written report. Type I UCAs will be completed within 60 duty days after the in-brief date.
Type II UCA includes unit trend analysis, survey access code distribution, and survey analysis and requires a final written report. Type II UCAs will be completed within 30 days after the in-brief date.
Type III UCA includes interviews only and requires a final written report containing the results and analysis. This type of UCA is usually reserved for units with fewer than 50 personnel. Type III UCAs will be completed within 30 duty days after the in-brief date
Buckley Air Force Base, in agreement with Air Force, U.S. government, and Defense Department policies, holds to strict Zero Tolerance for unlawful discrimination or harassment.
It is important for every Airman, military and civilian, to comply with Air Force Zero Tolerance exacting that it is unlawful to discriminate against, harass, intimidate or threaten another based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, reprisal, genetic information or sexual orientation in order to maintain a harassment-free environment.
Unlawful harassment incorporates sexual harassment of every nature, including unwelcome physical or verbal sexual advances.
In accordance with the Zero Tolerance, when a case of alleged discrimination or harassment is reported, appropriate action will be taken until the matter is resolved and any proven unlawful behavior is discontinued. Additionally, when corrective action is necessary, Airmen, military or civilian, will be disciplined appropriately.
"Unleashing potential is the true purpose of equal opportunity and treatment."
- Clinton E. Crosier