Office of Equal Opportunity - How to File a Complaint

Steps in Procedures

Time Line

  • An employee, or applicant, may file a written complaint with the Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) or any Department Equal Opportunity (EO) Designee within 30 days after the complainant (employee or applicant) knew, or reasonably should have known, of the alleged violation of the State's Fair Employment Practices Policy (SPP 2-302).

30 Days

  • After receiving the complaint, the EO Designee shall determine if the allegations as presented meet the definition of discrimination as defined by the law.  If a prima facie complaint has been established, the EO Designee shall investigate and recommend a proposed decision to the OEO Director, or designee.  The OEO Director, or designee, shall issue a written decision to the complainant and recommend to the head of the principal unit or appointing authority to grant relief, as appropriate.

30 Days

  • The complainant may appeal the decision, in writing, to the Department of Budget and Management, Office of the Statewide Equal Employment Opportunity Coordinator, Room 607, 301 West Preston Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. (http://dbm.maryland.gov/eeo/Pages/EEOHome.aspx )

10 Days


Miscellaneous Provisions

  • Procedure covers employees and applicants for positions in the Skilled, Professional and Management Services, or comparable positions.
  • Employees in the State Personnel Management System may elect to pursue an allegation of employment discrimination under either the above complaint procedure or the grievance procedure in SPP Title 12, but not both.
  • Days refer to calendar days.
  • A complainant may be represented during the complaint process by any person the complainant chooses.

Source: State Personnel & Pensions Article, Title 5, Subtitle 2
Any employee or applicant for employment who believes that he or she has experienced discrimination has a right to file a formal complaint with the federal or State agency listed below.  A person does not give up this right when he or she files a complaint with the Department’s Office of Equal Opportunity.

The following federal and State agencies enforce laws against discrimination:

Maryland Commission on Civil Rights (http://mccr.maryland.gov/)
St. Paul Street, 9th Floor
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
Phone: 410-767-8600       

United States Equal Employment (http://www.eeoc.gov/)
Opportunity Commission
10 South Howard Street, 3rd Floor
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
Phone: 410-962-3932   

Statutory time periods for the timely filing of charges of discrimination (Measure from the occurrence of a discriminatory action):

  • Department’s Office of Equal Opportunity or EO Designee – within 30 days after 1st knowing or reasonably knowing (SPPA§ 5-211 (b))
  • Maryland Commission on Civil Rights – Six months - (State Government Article Title 20, Annotated Code of Maryland).
  • United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission – 300 days-unless a proceeding involving same acts is instituted first before the Maryland Commission on Civil Rights. 

Confidentiality – Information obtained as part of an investigation conducted under this SPPA § 5-214 is confidential within the meaning of Title 10, Subtitle 6 of the State Government Article.