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Policies and Executive Orders

Each year, the National Science Foundation and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) issue policies that reflect the agency's commitment to equal employment opportunity and diversity. These policies are consistent with guidelines established by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) regarding a model EEO agency.

Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act of 2008(GINA): Makes it illegal to discriminate against employees or applicants becauseof genetic information. Effective November 21, 2009, Title II of GINA prohibitsthe use of genetic information in making employment decisions, restrictsacquisition of genetic information by employers and other entities covered byTitle II, and strictly limits the disclosure of genetic information. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces Title II of GINA (dealing with geneticdiscrimination in employment). The Departments of Labor, Health and HumanServices and the Treasury have responsibility for issuing regulations for TitleI of GINA, which addresses the use of genetic information in health insurance.

The Fair Labor Standards Act: Was amended by President Obama as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, H.R. 3590, on March 23, 2010 and the Reconciliation Act of 2010, H.R. 4872, on March 30, 2010. Among many provisions, Section 4207 of the law amends the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 (29 U.S. Code 207) to require an employer to provide reasonable break time for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for one year after the child's birth each time such employee has need to express milk. The employer is not required to compensate an employee receiving reasonable break time for any work time spent for such purpose. The employer must also provide a place, other than a bathroom, for the employee to express breast milk. If these requirements impose undue hardship, an employer that employs less than 50 employees is not subject to these requirements. Furthermore, these requirements shall not preempt a state law that provides greater protections to employees. For more information, see the U.S. Department of Labor's Fact Sheet on Break Time for Nursing Mothers under the FLSA.