Wisconsin Department of Justice Subgrantee Civil Rights Information
As a condition of the receipt of federal grant funding through the Wisconsin Department of Justice (WisDOJ), subgrantees must comply with civil rights laws and regulations that prohibit discrimination. The following sections provide information and links to websites that will be helpful to WisDOJ subgrantees in complying with these civil rights requirements. In addition, they provide information on certifications subgrantees must complete as a condition of receiving federal grant funding through WisDOJ.
Civil Rights Training Opportunities
The US Department of Justice (US DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP) has online training videos in the areas of Civil Rights, LEP and EEOP to help you understand your requirements as a subrecipient of these funds through a WisDOJ grant. You can find the training videos at http://www.ojp.gov/about/ocr/assistance.htm. If you do not find the information you are looking for please contact your WisDOJ program manager for assistance.
Civil Rights Laws, Regulations and Publications
The federal Office for Civil Rights (OCR), Office of Justice Programs (OJP) website includes information that will assist subgrantees in complying with civil rights laws and regulations. The site includes information regarding Equal Employment Opportunity Plans, the prohibition against national origin discrimination affecting persons with limited English proficiency, and other civil rights law and regulations: http://www.ojp.gov/about/offices/ocr.htm
The OCR site provides links to specific civil rights laws and regulations that are applicable to WisDOJ subgrantees that receive federal OJP funding, including but not limited to Byrne JAG Formula Grant, Title II Formula Grants (Juvenile Justice) Juvenile Accountability Block Grants (JABG), Title V (Juvenile Justice), Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), Residential Substance Abuse Treatment (RSAT), Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), Victims of Crime Act (VOCA), and National Criminal History Improvement Program (NCHIP). These laws and regulations may be found at http://www.ojp.gov/about/ocr/statutes.htm.
Limited English Proficiency (LEP)
Courts have interpreted Title VI's prohibition of discrimination on the basis of national origin to include discrimination based on English proficiency. Under Title VI (and the Safe Streets Act), recipients are required to provide LEP individuals with meaningful access to their programs and services. Providing "meaningful access" will generally involve some combination of services for oral interpretation and written translation of vital documents. LEP guidance and requirements for subgrantees of OJP Federal funds can be found at http://www.ojp.gov/about/ocr/lep.htm.
UPDATED: Equal Employment Opportunity Plan (EEOP) and Required Certification Process
An Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) plan is a comprehensive document that analyzes a subrecipient's relevant labor market data, as well as the subrecipient's employment practices, to identify possible barriers to the participation of women and minorities in all levels of a recipient's workforce. Its purpose is to ensure the opportunity for full and equal participation of men and women in the workplace, regardless of race, color, or national origin.
As a subrecipient of US DOJ funding, your organization may be required to submit a Certification Report or the Utilization Report portion of your plan to the Office for Civil Rights. If you are unsure of whether your organization is subject to the Civil Rights requirements of the Safe Streets Act, please refer to the EEOP FAQ How can I tell if a recipient is subject to the Safe Streets Act?
The Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Reporting System will allow you to create your organization’s account, then prepare and submit an EEO Certification Form and if required, create and submit an EEO Utilization Report. You will also be able to access your organization’s saved information in subsequent logins.
EEO Reporting Tool Login: https://ocr-eeop.ncjrs.gov
Not everyone is required to file an EEOP. The following subrecipients of WisDOJ may claim a complete exemption from the EEOP requirement (recipients that meet these criteria are still required to submit a Certification Form):
- Recipient has fewer than 50 employees,
- Recipient is a non-profit organization,
- Recipient is a medical institution
- Recipient is an Indian Tribe
- Recipient is an educational institution, or
- Recipient is receiving an award less than $25,000
The OCR website includes information about when an EEO Plan is required and how to develop an EEOP:
Filing A Civil Rights Complaint
The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) investigates complaints from individuals or groups who believe they have experienced discrimination from an agency that receives funding from the US DOJ. These include the Office of Justice Programs and its components as well as the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services and the Office on Violence Against Women. OCR can also investigate agencies that receive US DOJ funding from state and local goverment agencies.
Federal laws prohibit discriminating against individuals or groups, either in employment or in the delivery of services or benefits, on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age or disability. If the agency in question has received funds from the Office of Violence Against Women or under the Violence Against Women Act, they are also prohibited from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Complaints must be filed within either 180 days or 1 year from the alleged discrimination, depending on the relevant statute.
If you believe that you have experienced discrimination, you are encouraged to file a civil rights complaint as soon as possible. In more circumstances, you have only one year from the date of the incident to do so. Complete the Complaint Verification Form and the Identity Release Statement, found at https://ojp.gov/about/ocr/complaint.htm, and submit to:
Office for Civil Rights
Office of Justice Programs
U.S. Department of Justice
810 7th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20531