C4C

The Coalition For Change, Inc. (C4C) P.O. Box 142 Washington DC 20044

FACSIMILE (202) 456-3348/2461

President Barack Obama The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20050 Dear Mr. President: Last week, you issued an Executive EO (EO) – “Establishing a Coordinated Government-wide Initiative to Promote Diversity and Inclusion in the Federal Workforce.” Although we applaud the issuance of this EO, the membership of the Coalition For Change, Inc., (C4C) believes this EO should have been issued at the outset of your administration, thereby setting an important tone for your new administration and the management of the Executive Branch. Nevertheless, in the 32nd month of your administration, your recent EO to finally address diversity and inclusion in the Federal workplace is welcomed. According to the EO, executive departments and agencies are required “to develop and implement a more comprehensive, integrated, and strategic focus on diversity and inclusion as a key component of their human resources strategies.” The EO states that “this approach should include a continuing effort to identify and adopt best practices, implemented in an integrated manner, to promote diversity and remove barriers to equal employment opportunity, consistent with merit system principles and applicable law.” The C4C believes the EO is a good first step and looks great on paper. However, unless this EO holds managers accountable and addresses specific and meaningful penalties for violations of employees’ civil rights, the EO is nothing more than another bureaucratic requirement that produces more meaningless paper. It is our opinion that the EO, in its current form, is merely a toothless tiger that doesn’t bite, is feared by no one, and is not taken seriously by federal managers and supervisors. As a non-profit civil rights group that focuses on exposing and eliminating employment discrimination and retaliation in the Federal workplace, we are disappointed that your Executive EO did not address the critical issue of accountability. Holding Federal managers, who have been found to have engaged in illegal conduct and practices, accountable for their actions would send a powerful message throughout the bureaucracy. Too often, it has been brought to our attention that Federal managers found to have engaged in unlawful discrimination and retaliation have not only remained on the Federal payroll, but have also retained their grade level and not faced any disciplinary action. I wish to bring to your attention the matter of a Craig Littlejohn, a Department of Interior official who was found by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to have discriminated against an African-American male during the job selection process. In addition, Mr. Littlejohn admitted to the administrative judge that he referred to African-American subordinates as “monkeys.” Such federal managers are allowed to remain in the federal workforce and are not held accountable for their divisive and unlawful behavior.

Tanya Ward Jordan L.O.R., B, A., M.S. Founder

Philip Taylor B.A., M.P.A. President

Willie Berry, B.S. Treasurer

Michael Castelle, Sr. Diversity Chair

Milton Hill B.S., M.A., M.P.A. Outreach Chair

Ricardo Jones, Sr. EEO Chair

Arthuretta Holmes-Martin B.S., M.S. Mental and Spiritual Well-Being Chair

Cecil Paris PMP, B.S. Management and Organization Chair

Paulette Taylor A.A., B.A. Civil Rights Chair

Diane Williams B.A., M.S., J.D. Legislative Research Chair

www.coailtion4change.org C4C@coalition4change.org 1-866-737-9783

August 26, 2011

President Barack Obama August 26, 2011 page 2

In some cases, when discrimination and retaliation have been found, at worst the accused manager is reassigned to another supervisory position in the agency or the manager is reassigned to a “special assistant” position with little or no duties and responsibilities. Thereby, this former supervisor is allowed to be nonproductive until he or she is eligible to retire. We find this unacceptable. The C4C has long advocated that Federal managers should be held accountable for their unlawful conduct. We urge you to amend the Executive EO to address the issue of meaningful accountability that would include mandatory disciplinary action against federal managers found guilty of discrimination, retaliation or engaging in prohibited personnel practices.

Respectfully, | signed | Philip Taylor President The Coalition For Change, Inc.

cc: Senator Barbara A. Mikulski Senator Benjamin L. Cardin Senator Jim Webb Senator Mark R. Warner Representative Steny H. Hoyer Representative Frank R. Wolf Representative James P. Moran Representative Elijah E. Cummings Representative Chris Van Hollen Representative Donna F. Edwards Representative Gerry E. Connolly Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton The Honorable John Berry, OPM Director