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News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 26, 2004
Contact: Edmund Byrnes
Tel: 202-606-2402

OPM Director Kay Coles James Extends Public Comment Period for No Fear Act Regulations

Act is intended to protect whistleblowers from retaliation

Washington, D.C. - In response to a Congressional request, U.S. Office of Personnel Management Director Kay Coles James has issued an extension of the deadline for public comment on the first of three regulations under the Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation (No FEAR) Act. The Act is meant to reduce the incidence of workplace discrimination within the federal government by making agencies and departments financially responsible for judgments and settlements that result from employee law suits.

"I'm pleased to honor requests from interested stakeholders to extend the public comment period on the first phase of the regulations to April 26," said James. "During the comment period, I would encourage the public and interested parties to submit their opinions and honor the intent of the public comment period."

The regulation governs the process of reimbursements to the Treasury Department's judgment fund by agencies, from their budgets, for judgments against agencies and settlements for workplace discrimination.

In addition to the regulation, OPM will continue to work with representatives from the Department of Justice, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Treasury and the Office of Special Counsel to draft regulations concerning the remaining features of the No Fear Act, namely, notification and training, annual reporting requirements, and a comprehensive study on best-practices to address workplace discrimination within federal agencies.

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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.


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