Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP

As Managing Consultant for Berkshire Associates Inc., Sonia Chapin is responsible for the development and implementation of affirmative action planning, comprehensive audit support, and compensation services. Sonia’s expertise in the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) regulations, along with organizational analytics and an in-depth knowledge of employment related regulations has assisted hundreds of clients in saving millions in potential liability.

Recent Posts

OFCCP Announces New Ombudsman - Releases Contractor Compliance Portal

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on August 16 2019

Implementing two items under the pillar of Transparency, the OFCCP has announced the placement of an Ombudsman and released a Compliance Portal.

OFCCP has announced a new Ombudsman, Marcus Stergio. Director Leen issued a Directive establishing this position in September 2018, and the Ombudsman will serve as a liaison between contractors and the agency. His office will ensure that OFCCP is acting according to the agency’s legal authorities, policies, and procedures while also improving effectiveness of internal OFCCP operations. Marcus holds a Masters degree in conflict resolution and has worked as an administrator of the dispute resolution process for multi-national organizations.

OFCCP Releases Compliance Assistance Guides

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on August 7 2019

OFCCP recently released a new webpage aimed at providing compliance assistance documents to contractors. This page was developed as a result of the OFCCP town hall meetings and includes an OFCCP overview brochure, which introduces the agency and its enforcement approach to contractors. There is a “what to expect” document, which outlines items the agency expects from contractors as well as the rights contractors have when interfacing with the agency in a compliance review or investigation.

Supreme Court Rules Against Including Citizenship Question on the 2020 Census

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on July 4 2019

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled against including a citizenship question on the 2020 Census form. The Court has sent the question back to the administration to review the decision to add this question to the next Census.  

OFCCP Posts Website with Compliance Check Resources

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on May 9 2019

This week, OFCCP created a webpage to provide contractors more information about the “new” compliance check reviews that will be completed as part of the current round of audits. OFCCP has had the capability to conduct compliance checks for many years but has not opted to schedule them in the recent past. With this round of reviews, OFCCP re-introduced the Compliance Check, to be used in 500 of the 3,000 audits to be scheduled in the coming months. The agency has indicated they intend to schedule up to 1,000 Checks per audit list in the coming years, as a means of ensuring compliance across more contractor establishments.

Supreme Court Takes Up Two Cases

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on April 25 2019

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to take on two issues that directly impact Federal Contractors this week. The first case is based on the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and debates the question of if that statue extends anti-discrimination provisions based on sexual orientation or transgender status. Federal appeals courts have come to opposing conclusions on this provision, from New York, Georgia, and Illinois.

 

OFCCP Requests OMB Approval on FAAPs

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on April 17 2019

This week, OFCCP published a request to extend the Functional Affirmative Action Program (FAAP) process with no changes to the existing requirements. The FAAP is an alternative to typical establishment-based AAPs; contractors provide detailed information to the agency and can receive approval to create functional, rather than geographic, plans. The current Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval for the FAAP documents expires on April 30, and OFCCP has applied to extend the authorization for another three years. 

OFCCP Proposes Sweeping Changes to Scheduling Letters

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on April 12 2019

Making good on the promise at the recent town hall meetings, OFCCP recently published proposed updates to the scheduling letters, opening a 60-day comment period on these updates. It’s important to note that these changes are proposed and comments from the public are due by June 11. Given the nature of these changes, employers, law firms, consultants, employer associations, and civil rights organizations will likely be weighing in on this change. OFCCP’s current scheduling letters expire (that is, they are due for renewal of the OMB approval) on June 30. We believe it is unlikely that changes to the letters will be implemented by then and anticipate a temporary extension for the existing letters. So, for the foreseeable future, audits initiated in the next six to nine months (including those locations on the recently published CSAL) will probably be conducted under the existing letters.

OFCCP Announces Financial and Legal Industries Town Halls

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on March 20 2019

Continuing with the agency’s commitment to transparency, OFCCP announced two more Town Hall meetings to gather input from the contractor community. These meetings will be held in New York City and are designed to provide a forum for contractors in the financial and legal industries to provide input to the agency on what is important for the agency to consider as they continue to refine their enforcement focus for 2019. 

OFCCP Releases New Web Page in Support of Section 503 Focused Reviews

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on March 8 2019

In yet another signal the agency is serious about focused reviews, OFCCP added a web page to its site that compiles a number of resources related to IWDs. The new page offers ten different items, including the following:

Scary Audit Stories

Posted by Sonia Chapin, SPHR, SHRM-SCP on October 26 2018

Just in time for Halloween, OFCCP has been busy with what some may think are scary activities. Contractors with locations on the latest CSAL list are beginning to receive the initial phone calls to schedule their compliance reviews. The scheduling letters were said to start being mailed out on October 22, 2018.