The Notification and Federal Employee Anti-discrimination
and Retaliation Act
(No FEAR Act)
The Notification and Federal Employee Anti-discrimination and Retaliation
Act of 2002 (No FEAR Act), was the first civil rights law of the 21st century.
Signed by President George W. Bush, the No FEAR Act became effective October
2003. The No FEAR Act is intended to increase Federal agency accountability
for acts of discrimination or reprisal against employees. This act ensures
that federal agencies are individually held accountable for violations of
anti-discrimination and whistleblower protection laws.
The “cornerstones” of the No FEAR Act are intended to provide:
The anti-discrimination laws and whistleblower protection laws referenced
in the No FEAR Act are as follows:
A Federal agency cannot discriminate against an employee or applicant with
respect to the terms, conditions or privileges of employment on the basis
of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital
status or political affiliation. Discrimination on these bases is prohibited
by one or more of the following statutes: 5 U.S.C. 2302(b)(1), 5 U.S. C.
2302(b)(9) as applied to conduct described in 5 U.S.C. 2302(b)(1), 29 U.S.C.
206(d), 29 U.S.C. 63d1, 29 U.S.C. 633a, 29 U.S.C. 791 and 42 U.S.C. 2000e-16.
If you believe you have been the victim of unlawful discrimination you
may contact an EEO Counselor within 45 calendar days of the alleged discriminatory
action, at the following:
APHIS Office of Civil Rights
Counseling and Resolution Branch
Tel: (800) 342-7231
Whistleblower Protection Laws
A Federal employee with authority to take, direct others to take, recommend
or approve any personnel action must not use that authority to take or fail
to take, or threaten to take, a personnel action against an employee or
applicant because of disclosure of information by that individual that is
reasonably believed to evidence violations of law, rule or regulation; gross
mismanagement; gross waste of funds; an abuse of authority; or a substantial
and specific danger to public health or safety, unless disclosure of such
information is specifically required by Executive order to be kept secret
in the interest of national defense or the conduct of foreign affairs.
Retaliation against an employee or applicant for making a protected disclosure
is prohibited by 5 U.S.C. 2302(b)(8), Complaints alleging prohibited personnel
practices in Federal employment as well as requests for appropriate forms
may be directed to:
U.S. Office of Special Counsel
1730 M Street, N.W., Suite 218
Washington, DC 20036-4505
Tel: (800) 872-9855
Retaliation for Engaging in Protected Activity
A Federal agency cannot retaliate against an employee or applicant because
the individual exercises his or her rights under any of the Federal anti-discrimination
or whistleblower protection laws listed above.
EEOC and the Agency believe the data is both meaningful and useful in that
it will provide important information on how each agency is performing and
complying with EEO laws and provide full EEO complaint data disclosure.
No FEAR Act reporting information for USDA agencies can be found at http://www.usda.gov/nofear
For further information regarding the No FEAR Act regulations, refer to
5 CFR Part 724 or the USDA, Office of Adjudication and Compliance, via email,
at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information regarding Federal anti-discrimination,
whistleblower protection and retaliation laws can be found at the EEOC Website:
http://www.eeoc.gov and the Office of Special Counsel Website: http://www.osc.gov.
The USDA, APHIS, Office of Civil Rights, Diversity, and Inclusion (OCRDI) office may
also be contacted at (301) 851-4201 or 800-342-7231 for additional information.