The Federal Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Complaint Process consists of several steps - all designed to resolve the complaint at the lowest possible level, if at all possible. FK Form EEO Poster 690-600-1 provides names and phone numbers of persons to contact within the EEO Office. These posters are placed on employee bulletin boards throughout the Installation for the employee's convenience.
Who Can File A Complaint
Any current or former employee, or applicant for employment at Fort Knox, whether paid from Appropriated or Non-Appropriated Funds (except AAFES and DoD School system employees) may file an EEO Complaint with the Fort Knox EEO Office. In addition, some contract employees may also have a right to file using the federal complaint processing procedures. Determination of the rights of a contract employee to use these procedures will be made on a case-by-case basis and is dependant, in large part, on the working relationship between the contract employee and Fort Knox officials.
Informal Complaint Process
If an employee or applicant for employment feels that they have been discriminated against because of their age, race, sex, religion, national origin, color, disability (physical or mental), or because of reprisal, they should contact the Fort Knox EEO Office to initiate the complaint process. An EEO complaint must be initiated within 45 calendar days from the date of the incident or, if a personnel action, within 45 calendar days of its effective date, or the date that the complainant became aware of the discriminatory act or personnel action. Matters raised after the 45-day time limit will be looked into through the informal complaint process even though a formal complaint may later be dismissed for untimeliness.
The person filing a complaint will be given the option of:
- Remaining anonymous during the informal stage of the complaint process
- Using traditional counseling (EEO Counselor assigned to look into the matter and attempt to resolve)
- Opting for mediation with a trained mediator. (A neutral third party who will meet with the complainant and a management official who has the authority to resolve the complaint.) In accordance with local policy, if the complainant accepts mediation, management must participate.
If the complaint is resolved during the informal stage, the parties will be asked to document the resolution in the form of a negotiated settlement agreement (NSA). Failure to abide by the terms of the settlement agreement may provide the complainant the right to reopen the complaint.
If the complaint is not resolved during the informal stage, the complainant will be given a final interview and a Notice of Right to File a Formal Complaint of Discrimination. A copy of the counselor's report will be furnished the complainant after the final interview.
Right to Representation and Official Time
At any stage in the complaint process, the complainant may designate a representative. Designation of a representative must be made in writing to the EEO Office, and will become part of the case file. Any changes to this designation must also be made in writing and furnished to the EEO Office.
Complainants are entitled to use a reasonable amount of duty time to prepare and present their case. Determinations of what is reasonable must be made on a case-by-case basis and requested from the complainant's supervisor, prior to use. If the representative is also employed at Fort Knox, the representative is also eligible to use duty time for representation purposes.