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Washington, D.C. Hispanic employment grew to 6.4 percent of the permanent federal workforce in 1998, as compared to 5.2 percent in 1988, according to a report released today in Miami by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM).
OPM Director Janice R. Lachance said that while she is pleased progress is being made to bring federal Hispanic employment up to the level of their representation in the civilian labor force, she plans to do more. Lachance is in Miami to address the 13th Annual Conference of Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU).
Lachance said OPM's report, Hispanics in the Federal Government: A Statistical Profile, indicates that Hispanics are advancing into government's managerial ranks, though their overall representation lags behind their presence with non-federal employers.
"I am heartened to report the accomplishments of the Clinton/Gore Administration's plan to be more inclusive and to have the federal workplace better represent America's rich mix of cultures and ethnicities," said Lachance, "I will concentrate my future efforts on finding ways to open the door even wider to help more qualified Hispanics enjoy the rewards of a career in service to their nation."
The general movement of Hispanics throughout government mirrors the advancement of Latinos into upper management. In 1998, for instance, 2.8 percent of Hispanic federal employees were at the Senior Pay level, up from 1.8 percent in 1993.
"I am increasingly optimistic that OPM will make greater inroads toward introducing young Hispanics to the concept of public service and the ideal that service to one's country is a rewarding experience, both personally and professionally," said Lachance. "And with the attention paid to the diversity issue by President Clinton and Vice President Gore, I know that my optimism is shared by agency leaders throughout government."
Under Lachance's stewardship, OPM has been particularly active in efforts to recruit, hire and promote qualified individuals from minority communities. In 1998, for instance, OPM released a government-wide, Nine-Point Plan, which was followed up by a 10-Point Plan to increase OPM's internal employment of Hispanics. As a result, Hispanic representation in OPM's career Senior Executive Service has risen from 2.6 percent in fiscal year 1998 to 10.5 percent as of July 1999. In addition, John Sepulveda is OPM's first Deputy Director of Hispanic descent.
OPM's on-going Hispanic recruitment initiative has strengthened the relationship between federal agencies and Hispanic-serving institutions. One provision of this initiative has placed 32 touch-screen, job information kiosks at HACU-member educational institutions. The kiosks provide federal job seekers with up-to-date job listings and other relevant information. At any one time, as many as 13,000 job vacancies are listed on OPM's USAJOBS network, which also can be accessed at www.usajobs.gov.
Media can access Hispanics in the Federal Government: A Statistical Profile by calling Mike Orenstein in OPM's Office of Communications on (202) 606-2402.
Our mission is to Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People. OPM supports U.S. agencies with personnel services and policy leadership including staffing tools, guidance on labor-management relations and programs to improve work force performance.