Dec 2, 2020
Researchers assessed the prevalence and characteristics of sexual harassment, gender discrimination, racial/ethnic harassment, and racial/ethnic discrimination at FEMA. They surveyed FEMA employees about these civil rights violations and about workplace climate. This report documents the survey results.
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Following the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA's) 2018 internal investigation into sexual harassment and misconduct in its senior leadership ranks, FEMA leaders chose to openly discuss the problems and the need to develop and maintain a workplace in which all employees are treated with professionalism and respect. Although FEMA's investigation provided insights into the culture and misconduct in one FEMA office, it was not designed to provide a comprehensive account of harassment and discrimination across the organization.
Thus, FEMA asked the Homeland Security Operational Analysis Center (HSOAC) to provide an independent and objective assessment of the prevalence and characteristics of harassment and discrimination at FEMA. In April and May 2019, HSOAC fielded a survey designed to estimate the annual prevalence of workplace harassment and discrimination at FEMA and assess employee perceptions of leadership and workplace climate. In addition to sexual harassment, the survey assessed gender discrimination and racial/ethnic harassment and discrimination to provide a more complete description of the types of civil rights violations (harassment or discrimination on the basis of membership in any protected class) experienced by FEMA employees. This report contains detailed documentation of the results of that HSOAC-fielded survey.
Study Design and Analytic Approach
Prevalence of Gender-Based/Sexual Equal Employment Opportunity Violations in the Past Year
Characteristics of Gender-Based/Sexual Harassment in the FEMA Workforce
Characteristics of Gender Discrimination in the FEMA Workforce
Prevalence of Racial/Ethnic Civil Rights Violations
Characteristics of Racial/Ethnic Harassment in the FEMA Workforce
Characteristics of Racial/Ethnic Discrimination in the FEMA Workforce
Reporting Decisions, Perceived Organizational Response to Reports, and Barriers to Reporting
The FEMA Climate
Next Steps for FEMA
Detailed Results from the FEMA Workplace Survey
The FEMA Workplace Survey Instrument
Climate and Incivility Literature Review
HSOAC is a federally funded research and development center operated by the RAND Corporation under contract with DHS.