Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience.
I was offered and accepted a permanent job promotion to a GS-12 position at my workforce. Prior to the start date of the new job, I called HR to ask where and who I was to report to.
HR then informed me that the job offer was postponed and that I would be notified of the new start date for the job and to contact my workplace administration office if I had any questions. I emailed my workplace administration personnel regarding the decision to postpone the job and was told that there were manning issues and I would be notified when a decision was made.
Although HR assured me that they would keep me informed and let me know about the decision, I did not receive any subsequent phone calls or emails but decided to be patient and wait for a response. No response was ever provided.
Much later, I found out that another person was hired for the job. The individual who was hired is of a different gender, race and age.
Is the situation described considered an unfair hiring practice and can I file a grievance with the Merit Systems Protection Board, EEO or any other program that prohibits unfair hiring practices based on what happened?
You do not describe a case that is appealable to the Merit Systems Protection Board. You could file an EEO complaint, but just being a member of a different protected group is not enough. You have to prove the position was filled with a discriminatory motive.
Bill Bransford is managing partner of Shaw Bransford & Roth PC.
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