The Rhode Island Department of Transportation is committed to fulfilling its obligations under federal and state civil rights laws and equal employment requirements, and to supporting the Departmentís contractors, consultants and sub-recipients in achieving full compliance with those laws and requirements as well.
The Department will not discriminate in its employment and programs or activities, nor will it tolerate any such discrimination by its contractors, consultants and sub-recipients. Moreover, the Department strives to be a model agency with respect to:
Title VI/Environmental Justice
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin in any federally-assisted program or activity. Title VI and several other anti-discrimination directives, including Executive Order No. 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations, are the foundation of RIDOTís Title VI Program. As a recipient of federal funds, RIDOT takes its nondiscrimination obligations seriously and pledges that it will not, on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, disability, or income status, either directly or by contract:
The purpose of the Title VI Program is to provide agency-wide guidance and support to ensure effective implementation of these nondiscrimination principles in RIDOTís day-to-day operations. RIDOTís Title VI Program also provides leadership, assistance and oversight to RIDOTís sub-recipients of federal funds to ensure that RIDOTís sub-recipients comply with Title VI as well.
Limited English Proficiency
Executive Order No. 13166, Improving Access to Services for Persons with Limited English Proficiency, directs federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Transportation, to take reasonable steps to improve access to federally-assisted programs and activities for persons of limited English-speaking ability. As a recipient of U.S. Department of Transportation funds, RIDOT is committed to implementing a reasonable, consistent language assistance plan so that RIDOT may provide meaningful access to its programs and services by persons with limited English Proficiency (LEP).
Americans with Disability Act
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 are federal anti-discrimination laws that protect persons with disabilities. While Section 504 applies only to the federal government and recipients of federal funds, Title II of the ADA applies to all state and local governments, regardless of funding source. The ADA provides comprehensive civil rights protections to any qualified person with a disability; it forbids discrimination not only in government programs, benefits and services, but also in employment practices, access to public accommodations, and telecommunications.
The primary objective of RIDOTís ADA Program is to ensure that people with disabilities have an equal opportunity to enjoy all of its programs, services, and activities. Explore the following links to learn more:
Equal Employment Opportunity
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, and forbids retaliatory actions taken against individuals who report discrimination or participate in the investigation of alleged discrimination. RIDOT complies with Title VII and other federal and state mandates and adheres to equal employment opportunity (EEO) principles for all persons, regardless of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, age, or national origin.
In order to create a more effective and representative internal workforce, RIDOT encourages the hiring, training, and promotion of persons within protected classes to reflect more accurately the available workforce within the State of Rhode Island. Successful implementation of RIDOTís EEO Program will benefit the agency through increased use and development of previously underutilized human resources.
For further information on the above programs, contact:Melissa A. Long, Esq.
Disadvantaged Business Enterprises
The U.S. Department of Transportation's Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program provides a vehicle for increasing the participation by DBEs and Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs) in state and local procurement. DOT DBE regulations require state and local transportation agencies that receive DOT financial assistance, to establish goals for the participation of DBEs. Each DOT-assisted State and local transportation agency is required to establish annual DBE goals, and review the scopes of anticipated large prime contracts throughout the year and establish contract-specific DBE subcontracting goals. Three major DOT operating administrations are involved in the DBE program. They are the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Federal Transit Administration.
The DBE Supportive Services program is operated in conjunction with the DBE program funded by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and administered by RIDOTís Office of Business and Community Resources. It is the policy of the FHWA to promote increased participation of DBEs on federally funded highway and bridge contracts through the development and implementation of the DBE Supportive Services program.
DBE Supportive Services provides assistance to Rhode Island certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises. The program provides many excellent resources and individual business assistance intended to help DBEs excel. The program offers a variety of services and resources to facilitate the firms' development into viable, self-sufficient businesses capable of competing for and performing on federally assisted highway and bridge projects. In Rhode Island the program has been named, ďMission 360Ē.
The Contractor Compliance Program ensures that Federal contractors and subcontractors performing work on Federal and federally assisted highway contracts comply with nondiscrimination and affirmative action requirements. Through development and management of an effective Contract Compliance Program, the FHWA and State Transportation Agencies (STAs) are responsible for assuring that Federal contractors and subcontractors do not discriminate in their employment and contracting practices based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability. A contractor's minimum EEO requirements are set forth in the contract provisions referenced in Form FHWA-1273 as "Section II, Nondiscrimination." These include acceptance of a general operating policy that prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, or disability.
The FHWA On-the-Job Training (OJT) Program requires STAs to establish apprenticeship and training programs targeted to move women, minorities, and disadvantaged individuals into journey-level positions to ensure that a competent workforce is available to meet highway construction hiring needs, and to address the historical under-representation of these groups in highway construction skilled crafts. The primary objectives of OJT/Supportive Services (SS) are to increase the overall effectiveness of each STA's approved OJT program in connection with Federal-aid highway construction projects, and to seek other ways to increase the training opportunities for women, minorities, and disadvantaged individuals. In turn, OJT/SS is used to increase the participation of women, minorities, and disadvantaged individuals in skilled and semi-skilled crafts.
For further information on the above programs, contact:Vanessa E. Crum, Esq.