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EPA National News: EPA’S BROWNER CALLS FOR INVESTIGATION OF ALLEGED CIVIL RIGHTS ABUSE
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EPA’S BROWNER CALLS FOR INVESTIGATION OF ALLEGED CIVIL RIGHTS ABUSE

FOR RELEASE: THURSDAY, AUGUST 31, 2000

EPA’S BROWNER CALLS FOR INVESTIGATION OF ALLEGED CIVIL RIGHTS ABUSE

Administrator Carol M. Browner and Deputy Administrator Michael McCabe today called for EPA’s Inspector General to fully investigate the case of Anita Nickens, an African-American employee who has charged that she was asked in 1993 by a supervisor to clean a toilet.

“I find the allegation by Anita Nickens so abhorrent and blatantly discriminatory that I have asked for a full-scale investigation into this matter,” said Browner. “It is even more disturbing that this may have been done in my name by some supervisor, since I had no knowledge of the incident and obviously would never condone such behavior. I have made it clear repeatedly throughout my tenure that any form of discrimination by any manager or anyone else at EPA will not be tolerated.

“I am concerned about the Anita Nickens’ case and the other cases that have recently come forward,” Browner said. “I am more determined than ever to vigilantly guard against any form of prejudice at EPA. At the conclusion of the investigation that Mike McCabe and I are requesting today, we will take appropriate action.”

Since becoming Administrator of EPA in 1993, Browner has worked to increase diversity at EPA, increasing minority senior managers from 19 percent of the workforce to 30 percent and females from 20 to 30 percent. EPA’s Senate-confirmed Presidential appointees include six women, two African Americans and two individuals with physical disabilities.

The alleged incident involving Ms. Nickens occurred in North Carolina in 1993, but no formal complaint was filed, and therefore no official review took place. After learning of the incident in subsequent publicity over the last week, Browner concluded that the allegations were of such a serious nature that an investigation should still go forward.

Administrator Browner also announced today that she is seeking a meeting with the governing body of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People to work with them to continue to ensure that any form of discrimination is eliminated at the EPA.

“I want to solicit the advice and help of the NAACP and other organizations representing minorities and women in my on-going efforts to ensure equal opportunity at EPA for all employees, regardless of race, religion, gender, disability or sexual orientation,” said Browner.

R-129 ###

Release date:08/31/2000 Receive our News Releases Automatically by Email

 

 
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