“Partnering With Integrity”

What Faith-Based Organizations, Community Groups, and Workforce System Leaders Must Know About U.S. Department of Labor Equal Treatment and Religion-Related Regulations U.S. Department of Labor
1

What are the goals of the Faith-Based and Community Initiative (FBCI)?

To expand opportunities for faith-based and community organizations (FBCOs) to meet the social needs of Americans To ensure the equal treatment of FBCOs in the administration and distribution of Federal financial assistance To protect the religious liberty of FBCOs that partner with the Federal government and of participants in Federally supported social service programs
2

Changes to USDOL regulations and sub-regulatory policies
Goals of reforms undertaken by U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL):

Removing barriers to FBCO participation in USDOL social service programs Protecting the religious liberty of: (1) FBCOs that receive Federal financial assistance (2) participants in programs operated by these FBCOs
3

Regulatory changes were published in the Federal Register on July 12, 2004

Where can I find the relevant changes?

New equal treatment regulations (29 CFR Part 2, Subpart D) Workforce Investment Act (WIA) nondiscrimination and programmatic regulations (29 CFR 37.6(f); 20 CFR 667.266 and 667.275) Job Corps regulations (20 CFR 670.555) Job Corps Policy and Requirements Handbook (PRH)—Sections 6.8 (Civil and Legal Rights), 2.2, 3.17, 5.4 and 6.9
4

• •

The USDOL equal treatment regulations

Apply to all providers that implement USDOL supported social service programs, including:  For-profit and non-profit organizations, including FBCOs  State and local governments  One-Stop system  Job Corps Center operators & contractors Govern the administration and distribution of USDOL support
5

The USDOL equal treatment regulations

Apply equally to:  USDOL support  State funds commingled with Federal funds  Funds the State is required to contribute under a matching or grant agreement Embody core principles of the FBCI at USDOL
6

Core Principles of the Faith-Based and Community Initiative at USDOL I. II. Equal Opportunity for All Organizations Respect for the Faith of FaithBased Organizations (FBOs)

III. Respect for the Religious Liberty of Beneficiaries IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
7

I. Equal Opportunity for All Organizations
In the administration of USDOL social service programs:

No organization may be discriminated for or against on the basis of religious character or affiliation No eligible organization may be denied the opportunity to compete for or receive USDOL and other Federal financial assistance based upon the organization’s religious character or affiliation
8

I. Equal Opportunity for All Organizations

Federal, State, or other mechanisms through which Federal support is provided to organizations (for example, a mechanism giving out vouchers for job training) must, by law, be neutral with respect to religion Example: The entity selecting organizations to be placed on a list of eligible training providers under WIA must neither favor nor disfavor an organization based on religion.
9

II. Respect the Faith of Faith-Based Organizations
Faith-based organizations that receive USDOL support may:
• • •

continue to carry out their religious activities keep religious signs or symbols in their facilities continue to select their board members (including members of the clergy) and otherwise govern themselves on a religious basis offer voluntary religious activities to program participants—keep in mind that no “direct” Federal support can be used for religious activities and these activities must be separate in time or location from Federally supported activities and voluntary for program participants10

III. Respect for the Religious Liberty of Beneficiaries
Prospective or active program participants:

Must not be treated differently because of their religion or religious beliefs (or lack thereof) Must be permitted to freely express their views and exercise their right to religious freedom Must be provided with reasonable accommodation for their religious beliefs in programs; ‘reasonableness’ is determined on a case-by-case-basis, with regard to the particular circumstances involved Must be informed that participation in inherently religious activities is voluntary, and that their choice whether or not to participate will not affect the quality of the service they receive 11

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
What is USDOL “support”?

Defined in 29 CFR 2.31(g) as “Federal financial assistance, as well as procurement funding, provided to a non-Federal organization to support the organization’s administration of or participation in a USDOL social service program.” Includes grants, contracts, cooperative agreements, and other arrangements Includes monetary and non-monetary assistance (e.g., in-kind contributions, frequent use of Federally-supported property, etc.)
12

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
Determined by the type of Federal support and how the support relates to “inherently religious activities” What are examples of “inherently religious activities”?
  

Religious worship Religious instruction Religious proselytizing
13

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support

To know how religion can be involved in services provided with Federal support, the first question is whether the Federal support is “indirect”

14

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
Federal support is considered “indirect” when:

Beneficiaries are given genuine, independent choices about where to direct the aid, including having at least one option to which the beneficiary has no religious objection Beneficiaries freely choose where to direct the aid
15

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
So long as the tests for “indirect” support listed on the previous slide are satisfied, the following mechanisms can be considered “indirect” support:
 

Individual Training Accounts (ITAs) Personal Reemployment Accounts (PRAs)
16

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
Federal support is considered “direct” unless it satisfies the tests for “indirect” support (see slide 15) Some examples of “direct” Federal support include:  Grants  Sub-awards  Contracts  Cooperative agreements  USDOL formula grant funds
17

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support There are different rules that apply to how FBCOs may use “direct” and “indirect” support

What rules apply when Federal support is “direct”? What rules apply when Federal support is “indirect”?
18

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
When FBCOs receive “direct” support, the following rules apply: (1) “Direct” support must not be used for inherently religious activities (2) Organizations may still engage in inherently religious activities, but these activities must be kept separate in time or location from Federally-supported services (3) All inherently religious activities must be voluntary for program participants and beneficiaries
19

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
When FBCOs receive “indirect” support, the following rules apply: (1) Inherently religious activities can be made an integrated part of the regular training program. Participation by the customer in these religious activities is considered voluntary because it is the customer who has freely chosen to participate in the training program (2) As a result, customers can be required to participate fully in the training program, including any inherently religious activities
20

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
State and local areas develop standards and procedures by which organizations may qualify as Eligible Training Providers (ETPs). FBCOs that apply and that meet all requirements are placed on the ETP list. Eligible Training Providers that receive “indirect” USDOL support through an Individual Training Account (ITA), Personal Reemployment Account (PRA), or similar mechanism may: (1) make inherently religious activities an integrated part of their regular training program (2) require customers to participate fully in their program, including any inherently religious activities

21

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
Assuming the tests for “indirect” support are satisfied, One-Stop customers may use Individual Training Accounts (ITAs), Personal Reemployment Accounts (PRAs), or similar mechanisms to purchase training that (1) contains inherently religious activities and/or (2) leads to employment in a religious vocation.

22

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support

To become an Eligible Training Provider, an organization must submit an application to the Local Workforce Investment Board, following local procedures and deadlines The applicable local procedures generally require a description of each training program and, for established programs, information on past performance and cost To promote genuine choice, program descriptions should briefly identify any religious elements
23

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
Among the provisions of Section 188 of WIA that apply to all recipients (including FBCOs) is a prohibition on employment decisions based on religion for positions that administer, or are connected with, programs and activities that receive WIA financial assistance Section 188 does not apply to employment decisions made (1) before an organization first received financial assistance under WIA, or (2) for programs and activities that do not receive WIA financial assistance
24

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
The rules that apply to Federal contractors are different from those that apply to recipients of Federal financial assistance Federal contractors are entities that enter into agreements with the Federal Government for the purchase, sale, or use of real or personal property or nonpersonal services (they are not grantees)
25

IV. Appropriate Use of Federal Support
Nondiscrimination requirements that apply to Federal contractors are in Executive Order (EO) 11246. Additional nondiscrimination requirements that apply to Job Corps contractors can be found in 29 CFR Part 37 The President amended EO 11246 in December 2002 to permit covered Federal contractors (not grantees) to make employment decisions based on religion USDOL published new rules in the Federal Register implementing this change on September 30, 2003

26

Legal Guidance for the WIA System
White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives www.whitehouse.gov/government/fbci/guidance/index.html USDOL Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives www.dol.gov/cfbci/legalguidance.htm USDOL Civil Rights Center www.dol.gov/oasam/programs/crc/crcwelcome.htm Job Corps PRH Website jobcorps.doleta.gov/docs/prh.pdf
27

How to contact us

Rhett Butler, USDOL CFBCI E-mail: butler.rhett@dol.gov Voice phone: 202-693-6450 Robin McDonald, USDOL CFBCI E-mail: mcdonald.robin@dol.gov Voice phone: 202-693-6450 Denise Sudell, Civil Rights Center E-mail: sudell.denise@dol.gov Voice phone: 202-693-6554

All of the above phone numbers may be reached by TTY via the Federal Relay Service, 800-877-8339

28