The DOL's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is rescinding two enforcement guidance documents on pay discrimination originally issued in 2006, commonly known as the "Compensation Standards" and "Voluntary Guidelines." The agency says the move will enable OFCCP to conduct investigations of contractor pay practices consistent with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The notice withdrawing the two documents also includes new guidance for employers and other interested stakeholders setting forth the procedures, analysis, and protocols OFCCP will use going forward when conducting compensation discrimination investigations. OFCCP will supplement the guidance with frequently asked questions, technical assistance, webinars, and other resources and materials to ensure that contractors have ample information about how to comply with the law.

According to OFCCP, the new approach will help agency investigators better evaluate contractor compliance with Executive Order 11246. That longstanding executive order requires federal contractors to comply with antidiscrimination obligations, including prohibitions against pay discrimination.

Previously, OFCCP was constrained by a methodology adopted in 2006 that required use of the same narrow formula to review all contractor pay practices, regardless of the industry, types of jobs, issues presented or available data. Now, OFCCP will be able to hold contractors to the same legal standards that courts and other federal agencies already apply to these businesses under Title VII to prohibit job discrimination.

For copies of the notice of rescission and supporting materials, visit the DOL webiste.