Policy Statement: Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action

It is the policy of the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) that its employees and applicants for employment will be free from discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment, and retaliation with regard to employment practices or conduct in the workplace. This IDHS policy provides for freedom from discrimination and harassment in connection with employment and prohibits exclusion from personnel actions for reasons related to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, genetic information, pregnancy status, citizenship status, military status, order of protection status, military discharge status or sexual orientation. Further, the IDHS prohibits the discriminatory exclusion of any person from employment, examination, appointment, training, recruitment, promotion, retention, discipline, or any other personnel action.

The nondiscrimination, sexual harassment, and affirmative action policies of IDHS are in conformance with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Civil Rights Act of 1991; the Equal Pay Act of 1963; Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990; the Illinois Human Rights Act; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act; HIPAA General Administrative Requirements; HIPAA Security and Privacy; Non-Discrimination on the Basis of Disability in State and Local Government Services; Section 504 Grievance Procedure; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967; the Nutrition Act of 2008; Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008; the Pregnancy Discrimination Act; the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990; and the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act of 2008. Any IDHS employee or applicant for employment who feels that they have been sexually harassed or discriminated against, or harassed on any of the bases stated above, is free to file a discrimination or harassment complaint without fear of reprisal or retaliation.

Consistent with its stated policy on nondiscrimination and affirmative action and as permitted by law, IDHS is committed to undertaking affirmative action to correct any apparent underutilization, in all levels of employment, of women, persons who represent racial minorities, and people with disabilities, as defined in federal and State statutes and regulations, in all levels of employment. IDHS is also committed to ensuring that appropriate training is provided to maximize the promotion and retention of staff whose employment assists the Department in meeting its affirmative action goals. Additionally, IDHS will reasonably accommodate pregnant employees as required by the law (P.A. 98-1050; Illinois Human Rights Act 775 ILCS 5/1 et seq.).

The Chief Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action (EEO/AA) Officer has direct access to the Secretary of IDHS to discuss EEO/AA issues, progress, and discrimination complaints. The positive support of all IDHS managers and supervisors, administrative staff, and personnel is expected and required, in order to have a workplace that is free from discrimination or harassment, and that supports affirmative action for women, minorities, and persons with disabilities.

Grace B. Hou

Secretary (Chief Executive Officer)

September 1, 2023