FCC Seeks Comments on Petition to Change EEO Outreach Requirements

On December 12, 2016, two broadcasters – Sun Valley Radio, Inc. and Canyon Media Corporation (the “Petitioners”) – requested the FCC to issue a rulemaking to revise the Equal Opportunity Employment (“EEO”) recruiting outreach requirements. The Petition can be found here.

The current rules require broadcasters to send notices of full-time job openings to recruiting sources that are reasonably calculated to reach the entire community. The Commission has previously advised that use of only Internet recruitment sources was insufficient to satisfy the requirements of the rule and that other outreach methods must also be utilized.

The Petitioners have requested the FCC to issue a rulemaking to revise its EEO rules to allow broadcasters to solely utilize online recruitment sources in recruiting for new full-time job openings.

In particular, the Petitioners argue:

  • During the 15 years since the Commission’s original adoption of the broadcast EEO rules, almost all Americans have gained access to the Internet via at least one device or via public sources, such as libraries or other community buildings.
  • The Commission itself allows broadcasters to make certain disclosures and fulfill public file obligations via the Internet.
  • Job seekers and employers alike rely on the Internet as a principal recruiting or job seeking tool. At the same time, traditional means to advertise job openings, such as newspapers, no longer have the same reach as they once had.
  • Revised EEO rules would provide better flexibility for broadcasters in today’s Internet-saturated environment by expanding broadcasters’ potential talent pool, reducing job advertising costs, and increasing efficiency.

Comments with respect to the Petition are due by January 30, 2017. We strongly encourage broadcasters to support this Petition because the proposed rule changes will simplify broadcasters’ recruiting outreach efforts. Please let us know if you are interested in submitting comments to support the Petition.

Categories: Media