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FDIC Federal Register Citations

[Federal Register: October 19, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 202)]
[Notices]              
[Page 61774-61776]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr19oc06-97]                        

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FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION

No FEAR Act Notice

AGENCY: Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: FDIC is publishing notice to inform its employees, former
employees, and applicants for employment about their rights and
remedies under the Antidiscrimination Laws and Whistleblower Protection
Laws applicable to them. Pursuant to Title II of the Notification and
Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act, the Office of
Personnel Management promulgated a final rule in 5 CFR part 724 (71 FR
41095 (July 20, 2006)), requiring Federal agencies to provide such
notice.

DATES: Effective immediately.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Vincent L. Johnson, Deputy Director,
Office of Diversity and Economic Opportunity, Federal Deposit Insurance
Corporation, (703) 562-6092.

I. Background

    On May 15, 2002, Congress enacted the ``Notification and Federal
Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act of 2002,'' which is now
known as the No FEAR Act. One purpose of the Act is to ``require that
Federal agencies be accountable for violations of antidiscrimination
and whistleblower protection laws'' (Pub. L. 107-174, Summary). In
support of this purpose, Congress found that ``agencies cannot be run
effectively if those agencies practice or tolerate discrimination''
(Pub. L. 107-174, Title I, General Provisions, section 101(1)).
    The Act also requires this agency to provide this notice to Federal
employees, former Federal employees and applicants for Federal
employment to inform you of the rights and protections available to you
under Federal antidiscrimination and whistleblower protection laws.

II. Antidiscrimination Laws

    A Federal agency, including the FDIC, cannot discriminate against
an employee or an applicant for employment with respect to the terms,
conditions, or privileges of employment on the basis of race, color,
religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status or
political affiliation. Discrimination on these bases is prohibited by
one or more of the following statutes: 5 U.S.C. 2302(b)(1), 29 U.S.C.
206(d), 29 U.S.C. 631, 29 U.S.C. 633a, 29 U.S.C. 791, and 42 U.S.C.
2000e-16.
    If you believe you have been the victim of unlawful discrimination
on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin or
disability, you must contact an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)
counselor in the FDIC's Office of Diversity and Economic Opportunity
within 45 calendar days of the alleged discriminatory action, or, in
the case of a personnel action, within 45 calendar days of the
effective date of the action, before you can file a formal complaint of
discrimination with the FDIC. See, e.g., 29 CFR part 1614. If you
believe that you have been the victim of unlawful discrimination based
on age (age 40 and over), you must either contact an EEO counselor as
noted above or give notice of intent to sue to the U.S. Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) within 180 calendar days of
the alleged discriminatory action. If you are alleging discrimination
based on marital status or political affiliation, you may file a
written complaint with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) (see
contact information below). In the alternative, a bargaining unit
employee may pursue a discrimination complaint by filing a grievance
under the FDIC-NTEU collective bargaining agreement.

III. Whistleblower Protection Laws

    A Federal employee, including an FDIC employee, with authority to
take, direct others to take, recommend or approve any personnel action
must not use that authority to take or fail to take, or threaten to
take or fail to take, a personnel action against an employee or
applicant because of disclosure of information by that individual that
is reasonably believed to evidence violation of law, rule or
regulation; gross mismanagement; gross waste of funds; an abuse of
authority; or a substantial and specific danger to public health or
safety, unless disclosure of such information is specifically
prohibited by law and such information is specifically required by
Executive Order to be kept secret in the interest of national defense
or the conduct of foreign affairs.
    Retaliation against an employee, former employee, or an applicant
for employment for making a protected disclosure is prohibited by 5
U.S.C. 2302(b)(8). Additionally, FDIC employees are protected from
reprisal for whistleblowing activities under 12 U.S.C. 1831j. The
Inspector General Act (5 U.S.C. Appendix 3, section 7) prohibits
reprisal against any employee for making a complaint or disclosing
information to an Inspector General. If you believe that you have been
a victim of whistleblower retaliation, you may file a written complaint
(Form OSC-11) with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OCS) at 1730 M
Street NW, Suite 218, Washington, DC 20036-4505 or online through the
OSC Web site--http://www.osc.gov.


IV. Retaliation for Engaging in Protected Activity

    A Federal agency, including the FDIC, cannot retaliate against an
employee, former employee, or an applicant for employment because that
individual exercises his or her rights under any of the Federal
antidiscrimination or whistleblower protection laws listed above. If
you believe that you are the victim of retaliation for engaging in
protected activity, you must follow, as appropriate, the procedures
described in the Antidiscrimination Laws and Whistleblower Protection
Laws sections or, if applicable, the FDIC's administrative or
negotiated grievance procedures in order to pursue any legal remedy.

V. Disciplinary Actions

    Under the existing laws, each agency, including the FDIC, retains
the right, where appropriate, to discipline a Federal employee for
conduct that is inconsistent with Federal Antidiscrimination and
Whistleblower Protection Laws up to and including removal. If OSC has
initiated an investigation under 5 U.S.C. 1214, however, according to 5
U.S.C. 1214 (f), agencies, including the FDIC, must seek approval from
the Special Counsel to discipline employees for, among other
activities, engaging in prohibited retaliation. Nothing in the No FEAR
Act alters existing laws or permits an agency, including the FDIC, to
take unfounded disciplinary action against a Federal employee or to
violate the procedural rights of a Federal employee who has been
accused of discrimination.

VI. Additional Information

    For further information regarding the No FEAR Act regulations,
refer to 5 CFR part 724, as well as the FDIC's Office of Diversity and
Economic Opportunity, the Human Resources Branch in the Division of
Administration, and the Legal Division. Additional information
regarding Federal antidiscrimination, whistleblower protection and
retaliation laws can be found at the EEOC Web site--http://www.eeoc.gov
and the OSC Web site--http://www.osc.gov.

VII. Existing Rights Unchanged

    Pursuant to section 205 of the No FEAR Act, neither the Act nor
this notice creates, expands or reduces any rights otherwise available
to any employee, former employee or applicant for employment under the
laws of the United States, including the provisions of law specified in
5 U.S.C. 2302(d).


    Dated at Washington, DC, this 13th day of October, 2006.

    Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Robert E. Feldman,
Executive Secretary.
 [FR Doc. E6-17388 Filed 10-18-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6714-01-P




Last Updated 10/19/2006 Regs@fdic.gov