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§ 15c.2 Definitions.

Action means any act, activity, policy, rule, standard, or method of administration or use of any policy, rule, standard or method of administration.

Age Act means The Age Discrimination Act of 1975, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 6101 et seq.

Age means the number of elapsed years from the date of a person's birth.

Age distinction means any action using age or an age-related term.

Age-related term means a word or words that necessarily imply a particular age or range of ages (e.g. “children,” “adult,” or “older person”).

Agency means a major organizational unit of USDA with delegated authorities to deliver programs, activities, benefits, and services.

Agency Head means the head of any agency within USDA which may hold the title Administrator, Chief, or Director depending on the agency.

Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) means the civil rights officer for USDA responsible for the performance and oversight of all civil rights functions within USDA, and who retains the authority to delegate civil rights functions to heads of USDA agencies and offices. The ASCR is also responsible for evaluating agency heads on their performance of civil rights functions.

Beneficiary means a person or group of persons with an entitlement to receive or enjoy the benefits, services, resources, and information from, or to participate in, the activities and programs funded in whole or in part by USDA.

Complainant means any person or group of persons who files with any USDA agency a complaint that alleges discrimination in a program or activity funded in whole or in part by USDA.

Complaint means a written statement that contains the complainant's name and address and describes the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (OASCR) of the nature and date of the alleged civil rights violation. The statement must be signed by the complainant(s) or someone authorized to sign on behalf of the complainant(s). The complaint need not be written or signed if submitted in an alternate format to accommodate the complaint filing needs of a person who has Limited English Proficiency, a disability, or other special need. The complaint must be based on one or more prohibited bases.

Compliance Review means a systematically planned and regularly initiated investigation that assesses and evaluates the civil rights and equal opportunity policies, procedures and practices of a USDA agency or instrumentality to determine compliance with civil rights statutes, regulations, standards, and policies.

Department (used interchangeably with USDA) means the Department of Agriculture, and includes each of its operating agencies and other organizational units.

Discrimination means unlawful treatment or denial of benefits, services, terms, conditions, rights, or privileges to a person or persons based on a protected basis, including age.

(1) Federal Financial Assistance includes:

(i) Grants and loans of Federal funds;

(ii) The grant or donation of Federal property and interests in property;

(iii) The detail of Federal personnel;

(iv) The sale and lease of, and the permission to use (on other than a casual or transient basis), Federal property, or any interest in such property, or the furnishing of services without consideration or at a nominal consideration, or at a consideration which is reduced for the purpose of assisting the recipient, or in recognition of the public interest to be served by such sale, lease or furnishing of services to the recipient; and

(v) Any Federal agreement, arrangement, or other contract which has as one of its purposes the provision of assistance.

(2) Federal financial assistance does not include procurement contracts at market value, contracts of guarantee or insurance, regulated programs, licenses, or programs that provide direct benefits. The complaint must be based on one or more prohibited bases.

HHS means The United States Department of Health and Human Services.

Normal Operation means the operation of a program or activity without significant changes that would impair its ability to meet its objectives.

Program or activity includes all of the operations of:

(1) State and local governments.

(i) A department, agency, special purpose district, or other instrumentality of a State or of a local government; or

(ii) The entity of such State or local government that distributes Federal financial assistance and each such department or agency (and each other State or local government entity) to which the assistance is extended, in the case of assistance to a State or local government.

(2) Educational institutions.

(i) A college, university, or other postsecondary institution, or a public system of higher education; or

(ii) A local educational agency (as defined in 20 U.S.C. 7801), system of vocational education, or other school system.

(3) Private organizations.

(i) An entire corporation, partnership, or other private organization, or an entire sole proprietorship -

(A) If assistance is extended to such corporation, partnership, private organization, or sole proprietorship as a whole; or

(B) Which is principally engaged in the business of providing education, health care, housing, social services, or parks and recreation.

(ii) The entire plant or other comparable, geographically separate facility to which Federal financial assistance is extended, in the case of any other corporation, partnership, private organization, or sole proprietorship.

(4) Other organizations receiving Federal financial assistance. Any other entity which is established by two or more of the entities described in paragraph (r)(1), (2), or (3) of this section; any part of which is extended Federal financial assistance.

Recipient means any State, political subdivision of any State, or instrumentality of any State or political subdivision (to include the District of Columbia and any United States territories and possessions), any public or private entity, institution, organization or any of their instrumentalities, or any individual (provided the individual is not the ultimate beneficiary) in any State, to whom Federal financial assistance is extended, directly or through another recipient, for any program or activity, including any successor, assignee, or transferee thereof.

Statutory Objective means any purpose of a program or activity expressly stated in any Federal statute, State statute, or local statute or ordinance adopted by an elected general purpose legislative body.

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