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Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Emphasis Program

Program Manager: Trisha Cracroft
Phone: 406-842-5741 Extension 100
E-mail: Trisha Cracroft

In 2009, USDA updated its Departmental Regulation (DR) 4230-002, Special Emphasis Programs. The DR established a new Special Emphasis for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) employees.

LGBT refers collectively to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. Since the 1990s, the term replaces the phrase "gay community", which many within LGBT communities felt did not accurately represent them. The term “LGBT” is intended to emphasize a diversity of sexuality and gender identity-based cultures.

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Program Manager is responsible for providing LGBT awareness and education to NRCS employees and partners while focusing on such issues as employment, retention, promotion, training, career development and advancement opportunities affecting LGBT applicants and employees at NRCS.

The GLBT Emphasis program is an integral part of the overall equal employment opportunity (EEO) program and is designed to do the following:

  1. Ensure that gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people receive equal treatment in all aspects of employment.
  2. Increase the number of LGBT people employed in all professional, administrative, technical, clerical, and other categories, series and grade levels.
  3. Provide opportunities to participate in training, career development and leadership programs.
  4. Encourage the participation of LGBT populations in all NRCS-sponsored programs and activities.
  5. Provide a network of professional support for LGBT.
  6. Provide mentoring support to LGBT in the workforce.
  7. Educate all NRCS employees by raising the level of awareness of LGBT workplace issues and concerns.

The purpose of the program is to provide LGBT awareness and education to NRCS employees and partners while focusing on such issues as employment, retention, promotion, training, career development, and advancement opportunities affecting LGBT applicants and employees at NRCS.

Federal Legislation Affecting LGBT - Do You Want More Info?

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) provides a quick view of federal legislation that affects GLBT. You can find this information on their Web page at the following link: Federal Legislation.

Some documents in the following table require Adobe Reader.

Summary of Federal Legislation Affecting GBLT
Date Who/What Subject Read More About It
June 26, 2013 Insurance All legally married same-sex spouses will now be eligible family members under a Self and Family enrollment.  In addition, the children of same-sex marriages will be treated just as those of opposite-sex marriages and will be eligible family members according to the same eligibility guidelines. Guidance on the Extension of Benefits to Gay and Lesbian Federal Employees, Annuitants, and Their Families
April 4, 2011 Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP) On Monday, April 4, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) launched the FLTCIP Open Season.

The program, which OPM director John Berry said in a release "gives enrollees security and peace of mind as they plan for the cost of long term care," is now open to same-sex domestic partners. This is the first "open season" period when same-sex partners have been eligible for the coverage.

FLTCIP
Eligibility requirements for same-sex domestic partners of Federal and U.S. Postal Service employees and annuitants for coverage under the FLTCIP. Same-sex domestic partners
April 1, 2011 Federal Travel Regulation GSA Bulletin FTR 11-07 Relocation and Temporary Duty Assignment Allowances - Answers to questions from agency travel and relocation manager's questions concerning Interim Rule 75 FR 67629 which amended the Federal Travel Regulation definition of "immediate family" to include same-sex domestic partners and their dependents. GSA Bulletin FTR 11-07 (PDF; 169 KB)
March 3, 2011 Government Executive.com Domestic Dispute by Kellie Lunney

Discussion of expanding benefits to same-sex domestic partners. Includes a discussion of Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and OPM's continuance of enforcement of DOMA.

Domestic Dispute
September 10, 2010 US Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Memorandum for Chief Human Capitol Officers Family and parental leave.

Extension of 24-Hour Leave without Pay (LWOP) Family Support Policy to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees.

Extension of 24-Hour LWOP Family Support Policy to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees
August 31, 2010 US OPM Memorandum for Chief Human Capitol Officers Interpretation of "Son or Daughter" Under the Family and Medical Leave Act to extend benefits to children of same-sex domestic partners. Interpretation of “Son or Daughter” Under the Family and Medical Leave Act
June 3, 2010 US OPM Memorandum for Chief Human Capitol Officers Implementation of the President's Memorandum Regarding Extension of Benefits to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees. Implementation of the President’s Memorandum Regarding Extension of Benefits to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees
June 2, 2010 The President's June 2, 2010 Memo Extension of Benefits to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees. Presidential Memorandum-Extension of Benefits to Same-Sex Domestic Partners of Federal Employees
June 17, 2009 Presidential Memorandum Federal Benefits and Non-Discrimination
  • Directs the Secretary of State and the Director of the Office of Personnel Director of the Office of Personnel Management to extend the benefits they have respectively identified to qualified same-sex domestic partners of Federal employees where doing so can be achieved and is consistent with Federal law.
  • Directs a review of benefits by all agencies and departments of benefits to same-sex domestic partners and recommend additional measures that can be taken additional measures that can be taken.
  • Directs OPM to issue guidance regarding compliance with civil service laws which make it unlawful to discriminate against Federal Employees on the basis of factors not related to job performance.
Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies - Federal Benefits and Non-Discrimination