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African American Employment Program

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) proudly leads the effort to build a diverse workforce and cultivate an inclusive work environment. We do this by developing and implementing policies and programs that promote diversity and inclusion in our workplace as we strive to ensure that VA’s workforce is drawn from all segments of society so that it is poised to meet the present and future needs of our Nation's Veterans, their families, and survivors.

The African American employment program was strengthened through Executive Order 11478, Equal Employment Opportunity in the Federal Government, which established the Equal Employment Opportunity Program. It is the policy of the Federal government to provide equal opportunity in employment to all individuals regardless of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability, or age. Management Directive 715 provides policy guidance and standards for establishing and maintaining effective affirmative programs of equal employment opportunity under Section 717 of Title VII (PART A) and effective affirmative action programs under Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act (PART B).

The purpose of the African American Employment Program is to help identify and eliminate actual recruitment and employment inequities (if any exist), which may adversely affect African American employees and applicants, and to identify areas with less than expected participation or under-utilization of African Americans in VA’s workforce.

Within this framework, some of the specific program objectives include:

  • Identify and address any barriers to the hiring, development and advancement of African Americans.
  • Assist to develop and implement special program initiatives that will enhance the employment and advancement of African Americans.
  • Identify ways to ensure equal consideration of African American employees for promotions, training, and awards.
  • Monitor separations and disciplinary actions for African American employees.
  • Serve as liaison between recruiters and internal/external organizations which can assist in recruitment efforts and activities.
  • Develop and maintain positive working relationships with community, professional and national organizations, college and universities

For more information, contact VA's National African American Employment Program Manager or, for additional resources, visit the Black History Month page.

MOUs and Partnership Agreements

  • Memorandum of Understanding between AAFEA and AAGEN (PDF)
  • Memorandum of Understanding between BIG and VA (PDF)

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Explore VA Careers

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Veterans Employment

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Career Advancement Tools

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State of African Americans at VA

  • Under development.

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Executive Orders

  • Executive Order 13583 – Establishing a Coordinated Government-wide Initiative to Promote Diversity and Inclusion in the Federal Workforce, August 18, 2011
  • Executive Order 13562 – Recruiting and Hiring Students and Recent Graduates, December 27, 2010
  • Executive Order 11478 – Equal employment opportunity in the Federal Government
  • Executive Order 13532 – White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Promoting Excellence, Innovation and Sustainability at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, March 2010

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VA Annual Reporting Requirements

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VA PowerPoint Presentations

  • Presentation for VACO Blacks in Government Chapter, State of African Americans at VACO, January 2012 (PDF))
  • Presentation by Georgia Coffey, Deputy Assistant Secretary, ODI, for the VA Agency Forum held in Detroit, MI, August 2012 (PDF)

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Related Links