Is it ethical and/or legal for me to give one of the contractors in my office a letter of reference? I just don't think it is the correct action to take.
You can call me at 805-4477 if you want to talk more (Leslie Deneault). You are not breaking any law by giving a job refererence for someone you monitor and observe in your role as a COR. You are not this individuals supervisor. But you are a person who can honestly say what you have observed in this persons work habits. Just last year, I gave a written recommendation on an individual who taught some courses for DAU. I was the COR monitoring the performance on these contracts. I wrote about how I had observed him teaching our courses. On the other hand, there could be a conflict of interest if the person is applying for a Government job on the contract you are currently montoring. Is that the case? You defintely can not write a recommendation if you are going to be a member of the panel selecting the Gov't employee.
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If giving this letter of reference is making you feel uncomfortable, you don't have to do it. Nothing requires you to give a letter of reference. Just tell the person no, because you feel uncomfortable. Thats OK.