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*** The Office of Personnel Management announced a pause to required diversity and inclusion training material pending review and approval. This new guidance, issued Oct. 2, is in keeping with a Trump administration purge of employee training material for concepts it says are divisive and anti-American, including "critical race theory," "intersectionality," "white privilege" and "unconscious bias."

*** The Government Accountability Office will investigate claims of systemic racism at the Department of Veterans Affairs, at the request of Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawai'i). The lawmakers sought the probe from the watchdog agency, which cited a poll from the American Federation of Government Employees that found that 78% of employees surveyed said that racism was a "moderate to severe problem at VA."

"A common thread in these reports of racism and other demeaning treatment at VA facilities is that employees who complained faced retaliation when they attempted to elevate their concerns to their superiors," Warren and Schatz wrote in their letter to GAO.

*** Two Treasury Department components issued warnings to financial institutions about facilitating ransomware payments. Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control warned financial institutions that they risk sanctions and encourage other malefactors if they process such payments. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network reminded firms of their responsibility to alert regulators to potential crimes by filing suspicious activity reports and gave companies a special cyber tag to use to in reports.

Posted on Oct 05, 2020 at 2:28 AM


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