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November 4, 2008    DOL Home > Compliance Assistance > By Topic > Termination Issues > Discrimination > Employees of Federal Contractors and Subcontractors   

Termination Issues:


  Employees of Federal Contractors and Subcontractors

 Frequently Asked Questions


Equal employment opportunity (EEO) laws prohibit specific types of employment discrimination. These laws prohibit discrimination in employment practices such as firing on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, and status as an individual with a disability or protected veteran. Within the Department of Labor, the Employment Standards Administration's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) oversees EEO and nondiscrimination laws and regulations that apply to employers holding federal contracts and subcontracts.



  • Filing a Complaint - Individuals may file a complaint if they believe they have been discriminated against by federal contractors or subcontractors. A complaint may also be filed by organizations or other individuals on behalf of the person or persons affected.





Federal contractors are required to preserve any personnel or employment records made or kept by the contractor for two years from the date of the making of the personnel record or the personnel action, whichever occurs later. Examples of records that must be maintained include but are not limited to: job descriptions; job postings and advertisements; records of job offers; applications and resumes; interview notes; tests and test results; written employment policies and procedures; and personnel files. Contractors with fewer than 150 employees or who do not have a government contract of at least $150,000 only need to keep records for one year.

All federal contractors with 50 or more employees that have either (1) a contract, subcontract, or purchase order of $50,000 or more; or (2) serves as an issuing depository of government funds in any amount; or (3) are a financial institution that serves as issuing and paying agent of U.S. Savings Bonds and Savings Notes, are required to file an Employer Information Report (EEO-1 Report). The Standard Form 100, EEO-1 Report, requires that employers report on the number of employees by race, ethnicity, and gender for each of nine job categories. The EEO-1 Report must be filed annually, not later than September 30. EEO-1 Reports may be filed electronically through a secure Web-based Internet site or may be filed in paper format. More information on the EEO-1 Report can be obtained from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) secure Web site []; or by e-mailing EEOC at; or by calling 1-866-286-6440 (toll free).

See also 41 CFR Part 60-1.7.


DISCRIMINATION LAWS - Employees of Federal Contractors and Subcontractors

Race, Color, Religion, Sex, and National Origin

  • Executive Order 11246 - Prohibits federal contractors and subcontractors and federally assisted construction contractors and subcontractors that generally have contracts that exceed $10,000 from discriminating in employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

  • 41 CFR Part 60-1 - Regulation describing the obligations of contractors and subcontractors pursuant to Executive Order 11246.

People with Disabilities

  • Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act - Requires employers with federal contracts or subcontracts that exceed $10,000, and contracts or subcontracts for indefinite quantities to take affirmative steps to hire, retain, and promote qualified individuals with disabilities.

  • 41 CFR Part 60-741 - Regulation describing the affirmative action and nondiscrimination obligations of contractors and subcontractors regarding individuals with disabilities pursuant to Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act.

  • 41 CFR Part 60-250 - Regulation describing the affirmative action obligations of contractors and subcontractors for employing disabled veterans and veterans of the Vietnam era.


Race, Color, Religion, Sex, and National Origin

People with Disabilities

  • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) - Primarily enforced by the EEOC, this Act prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, public accommodation, communications, and governmental activities.

People 40 Years of Age or Older



  • Employment Standards Administration (ESA)
    Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)

    200 Constitution Avenue, NW
    Room C-3325
    Washington, DC 20210
    Tel: 1-866-4-USA-DOL (1-866-487-2365), or 1-800-397-6251
    TTY: 1-877-889-5627
    Local Offices

  • For questions on other DOL laws,
    please call DOL's Toll-Free Help Line at 1-866-4-USA-DOL. Live assistance is available in English and Spanish, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Additional service is available in more than 140 languages through a translation service.
    Tel: 1-866-4-USA-DOL
    TTY: 1-877-889-5627

*Pursuant to the U.S. Department of Labor's Confidentiality Protocol for Compliance Assistance Inquiries, information provided by a telephone caller will be kept confidential within the bounds of the law. Compliance assistance inquiries will not trigger an inspection, audit, investigation, etc.

Phone Numbers