Equal Opportunity Branch (EO)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the purpose of the Department of the Army Equal Opportunity Program?
The Department of the Army Equal Opportunity (EO) program formulates, directs, and sustains a comprehensive effort to maximize human potential and to ensure fair treatment for all persons based solely on merit, fitness, and capability in support of readiness.
What are the goals of the Army’s (EO) program?
To provide EO for military personnel, and family members, both on and off post and within the limits of the laws of localities, states, and host nations. Create and sustain effective units by eliminating discriminatory behaviors or practices that undermine teamwork, mutual respect, loyalty, and shared sacrifice of the men and women of America’s Army. Additionally, in many circumstances, DA civilians may use the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaint system.
What publication or Regulations governs the Army Equal Opportunity Program and Prevention of Sexual Harassment?
Army Regulations 600-20 Chapter 6 covers the Equal Opportunity Program in the Army. Chapter 7 covers the Prevention of Sexual Harassment, and Appendix E covers the EO/Sexual Harassment Complaint Processing System.
What areas of complaints does the EO complaints processing system address?
The EO complaints processing system addresses complaints that allege unlawful discrimination or unfair treatment on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, and national origin.
What are two types of EO complaints?
Informal and Formal Complaint. An informal complaint is any complaint that as soldier, family member or DA civilian does not wish to file in writing. Informal complaints may be resolved directly by the individual, with the help of another unit member, the commander or other person in the complainant’s chain of command. A formal complaint is one that complaint files in writing and swears to the accuracy of the information. Formal complaints require specific actions, are subject to timelines, and require documentation of the actions taken.
What form is used to file a formal complaint?
DA Form 7279-R should be used file a formal complaint.
How much time does a Soldier have to file a formal complaint?
Soldiers has 60 calendar days from the date of the alleged incident in which to file a formal complaint. This time limit is established to set reasonable parameters for the inquiry or investigation and resolution of complaints, to include ensuring the availability of witnesses, accurate recollection of events, and timely remedial action. If a complaint is received after 60 calendar days, the commander may/may not conduct an investigation into the allegations or appoint an investigating officer.
The commander has how many days to conduct an investigation?
The commander has 14 calendar days (or three weekend drill periods for Reserve Components) in which to conduct an investigation, either personally or through appointment of an investigating officer. If due, to extenuating circumstances, it becomes impossible to conduct a complete investigation within 14 calendar days allowed, the command may obtain an extension from the next higher commander for usually not more than 30 calendar days.
What are my responsibilities when submitting a complaint?
- Advise the command of the specifics of sexual harassment and unlawful discrimination complaints and provide the command an opportunity to take appropriate action to rectify/resolve the issue.
- Submit only legitimate complaints and exercise caution against unfounded or reckless charges.
- It is recommended that you attempt to resolve the complaint by first informing the alleged offender that the behavior must stop.
What are some techniques to deal with Sexual Harassment?
- Direct approach. Confront the harasser and tell him/her that the behavior is not appreciated, not welcomed and that it must stop. Stay focused on the behavior not the impact. Use common courtesy. Write down the thoughts before approaching the individual involved.
- Indirect approach. Send a letter to the harasser stating the facts, personal feelings about the inappropriate behavior and expected resolution.
- Third party. Request assistance from another person. Ask someone else to talk to the harasser, to accompany the victim, or to intervene on behalf of the victim to resolve the conflict.
- Chain of Command. Report the behavior to immediate supervisor or others in the chain of command and ask for assistance in resolving the situation.
- File a formal complaint. Details for filing an informal or formal complaint are in AR 600-20, Appendix D.
How do I become an Equal Opportunity Advisor (EOA)?
The selection requirements are listed in AR 600-20, 6-5, EOA Selection and Assignment Policy. Get with your Installation EOA for guidance.