Participation and Privacy Policy

Terms of Participation and Privacy Policy

We created this online dialogue in order to engage our stakeholders in a discussion to better support the hiring, retention and advancement of people with disabilities across industries and within both the public and private sectors, as well as to reduce employment barriers presented by the lack of transportation services, accessible technology, health care and other essential supports.

To foster interaction, visitors to this online dialogue may submit ideas, submit comments about ideas, and vote on those ideas they think are the most important.

Our editorial staff will periodically be posting proposed new material for you to respond to, and in some cases will post responses to some of the ideas and comments.

Moderation Policy and Terms of Participation

We at the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy believe in the importance of openly sharing ideas and we hope to receive comments from all viewpoints. We do however require that the discussion remain on topic and appropriate for participants of all ages. Accordingly, we ask all participants to agree to the following Terms of Participation:

  1. To ensure a productive discussion, those who elect to participate agree to post only ideas or comments directly related to the discussion topic and its contents.
  2. Those who elect to participate agree to conduct themselves in a civil manner. This includes refraining from submitting obscene or threatening language; discriminatory language (including hate speech) based on race, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or disability; sexually explicit material; and other material that would violate the law if published here.
  3. Those who elect to participate agree to refrain from submitting ideas or comments that promote services or products (not including non-commercial links that are relevant to this website); and to refrain from including private phone numbers, email addresses, or postal addresses or embedding other media (not including hyperlinks to other media).

By participating in this online dialogue, visitors also agree that ideas or comments they submit for posting may be voted on by other members of the public through the use of up or down arrows, which contributes to the rating of each idea. A positive rating of the post increases the score and a negative one decreases the score.

By participating in this online dialogue, visitors also agree that ideas or comments they submit for posting may be flagged as inappropriate by other members of the public through the use of the “report this” link that is visible alongside each idea. The editorial staff will be monitoring flagged content and reserve the right to move or remove offensive or inappropriate content.

As noted above, ideas and comments that are deemed inappropriate may be moved or removed from the online dialogue. Other than this, ideas and comments will not be edited except that editorial staff may remove personally identifiable information such as social security numbers, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, other people’s names and information, etc.

Privacy Policy

Information Provided by Participants

By participating in an online dialogue you agree to share your personal information in three ways:

  • Information Entered by You upon Registration

    Before you can participate and share your ideas, we require registration which requires information that can be directly associated with you. We call this “Personal Information.” It always includes your email address and for certain dialogues may also include your location, type of organization or other identifying information. You can change your username, email address and password at any time by accessing your profile page. For other changes, please contact the administrator at We encourage you to identify yourself by your legal name and affiliation to encourage civil discourse and as a means to creating a strong reputation for yourself as part of this online community.

    We collect no other Personal Information about you other than that which you choose to provide as part of the registration process.

    It is our general policy not to make Personal Information available to anyone other than members of the ePolicyWorks Team unless it is required by law or is disclosed as otherwise described in this policy; e.g., ideas and comments are displayed with the name that the visitor chooses to provide upon registration. By default the username will be generated according to the email address, but you have the ability to change the username from the profile menu (Profile >> Profile Information >> Name). The ePolicyWorks team does not sell, rent, exchange or otherwise disclose our mailing lists or information about our site visitors.

  • Information you choose to Publish

    When you submit information for publication in this online dialogue, the submission will be published with your username. Other Personal Information, including your email address, will not be published.

  • Information Gathered Indirectly to Analyze General Traffic Patterns

    In order to analyze general traffic patterns for the purpose of making our online dialogue more useful to visitors, we automatically log and temporarily store the following information:

    • IP addresses, which are the locations of computers or networks on the Internet, of visitors to this website;
    • The types of browsers and operating systems used to access this website;
    • The date and time of visits to this website;
    • The pages visited; and
    • The address of websites from which visitors arrive at this website.

    We do not gather, request, record, require, collect or track any user’s Personal Information through these processes.


A persistent cookie is a piece of data stored by a user’s browser that helps a website or service such as this online dialogue tool to recognize that user’s unique computer, and thus “remember” you on return visits. You can remove or block cookies by changing the settings of your browser.

  • IdeaScale uses an optional persistent cookie in this tool to recognize returning participants so they do not have to log in each time they visit the site.
  • IdeaScale uses persistent cookies to save user login information (the user’s login ID) between sessions. The user is given a choice (an “opt in” approach) to check a box to stay signed in. This is an optional convenience to you if you do not want to have to remember your login information each time you visit the site.

No personal information is saved in this cookie set by IdeaScale, nor can this cookie be used to track user activities across other websites.

For purposes of encouraging participation in these dialogs and convenience of the public, the General Services Administration has requested a specific waiver of the federal policy prohibiting the use of persistent cookies. This waiver can be viewed in PDF on

This website has links to other government and non-government websites. Once you follow a link to a different website, your actions are no longer subject to this Terms of Participation and Privacy Policy.

Children’s Privacy

Because we care about the safety and privacy of children online, we comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA). COPPA and its accompanying FTC regulation establish United States federal law that protects the privacy of children using the Internet. We do not knowingly contact or collect personal information from children under 13. Our site is not intended to solicit information of any kind from children under 13.

Privacy Act Statement

The Privacy Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-579) requires that you be given certain information in connection with your furnishing of identifying information to the ePolicyWorks Dialogue online discussion tool. Accordingly, pursuant to the requirements of the Act, please be advised that (1) the general authority for the collection of this information is 35 U.S.C. § 2 and 44 U.S.C. § 3101; (2) furnishing of the information solicited is voluntary; and (3) the principal purpose for which the information is intended to be used by the USPTO is to increase the utility in disseminating information to the public about USPTO. If you do not furnish the requested information, you may not be permitted to post responses using the online dialogue tool.

Routine uses of records maintained in the system, including categories of users and the purposes of such uses: See Prefatory Statement of General Routine Uses Nos. 4-5, 9-10, and 13, as found at 46 FR 63501-63502 (December 31, 1981). The USPTO may use the information contained in this system of records to provide patent and trademark business information to customers or to provide customers with access to patent and trademark business information.

Internet Security

For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, this government computer system employs software programs to monitor network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage.

Unauthorized attempts to upload information or change information on this service are strictly prohibited and may be punishable under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act.

Your Agreement

These are terms of an agreement between you and this online dialogue. By submitting an idea, submitting a comment, or rating an idea, you acknowledge that you have read, understood, and agree to be bound by these terms and to comply with all applicable laws and regulations.

If you wish to communicate with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy about the online dialogue, but do not wish to register on this website or abide by the Terms of Participation, you can contact us at

Changes to this Policy

In the event that we release new participatory features to this online dialogue, we will update the Terms of Participation accordingly.

We will also revise or update this policy if our practices change, or as we develop better ways to keep you informed about them. You should refer back to this page often for the latest information and the effective date of any changes. If we decide to change this policy, we will post a new policy on our site and change the date at the bottom. Changes to the policy shall not apply retroactively.

Thank you for taking the time to read the Terms of Participation and Privacy Policy. We encourage your participation in the discussion and look forward to an active exchange of ideas.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at