On October 25th, 2017 the House Judiciary Committee approved Rep. Lamar Smith’s (TX) Legal Workforce Act. The bill would mandate the usage of the E-Verify system, currently used by the federal government to electronically verify whether potential employees are legally authorized to work in the United States. Private companies are currently free to enroll in the system, but despite its ease and reliability, use of the system in the private sector has been minimal.
Our best guess? Many of these companies don’t want to handle the oversight this program would have on their hiring practices. Many companies knowingly hire fraudulent and illegal workers, overworking and underpaying them in order to maintain profit margins. Only a few years ago, Infosys, a massive IT consulting and outsourcing firm, was hit with a lawsuit from the Department of Justice for hiring illegal workers and paid a record $34 million in fines.
The labor force of America deserves to be protected from unfair and illegal competition, and we cannot expect those that benefit from breaking the law to regulate themselves. In a statement, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (VA) wrote “One way to make sure we discourage illegal immigration in the future is to prevent unlawful immigrants from getting jobs in the U.S. Requiring the use of E-Verify by all employers across the country will help do just that.”
We encourage our supporters and followers to learn more about the bill, and ask their representatives in Congress whether they plan to support the legislation.