Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibits discrimination of individuals with disabilities by federal subcontractors and contractors and requires employers to take affirmative action to recruit, hire, promote, and retain such individuals. If you are a government contractor or subcontractor who has a federal contract of more than $15,000 (adjusted for inflation) then you are required to provide applicants and staff at certain points in their employment (at least “every 5 years beginning the first year that they become subject to …Section 503”) with a Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability Form. In addition, at least once in between these 5-year increments, “contractors need to remind their employees that they may voluntarily update their disability status at any time.” These government contractors and subcontractors have a 7% goal of employing people with disabilities and the information voluntarily provided assists them with understanding how successful their efforts have been. The Office of Federal Contractor Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has updated the preferred language for disabilities and has included additional examples of disabilities. They have also provided thirteen translated versions.

The OFCCP has announced that the deadline for these contractors and subcontractors to implement the new form into their applicant and employee systems and processes is July 25, 2023.

Also, for those of you who are interested in mediation, the Federal Mediation Conciliation Service (FMCS) will be launching a new podcast called “Conflict Resolutionary” later this summer. It can be found on most streaming platforms and on

Whether you are a contractor or a private employer, Southwestern HR Consulting (SWHRC) is here to help. We keep track of the latest employment updates to keep you in compliance. Contact us today!

Magdalena Vigil-Tullar

Written by | Magdalena Vigil-Tullar


Phone: 505-270-7494 | Email:

PO Box 14274 | Albuquerque, NM 87191

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