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alp227 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 01:08 PM
Original message
Immigration Audits Drive Illegal Workers Underground
Edited on Mon Aug-15-11 01:21 PM by alp227
MINNEAPOLISIn 2009, Alba and Eugenio were making almost twice the federal minimum wage, plus benefits, cleaning a skyscraper for a national janitorial company. With two toddlers, the Mexican couple enjoyed relative prosperity in a tidy one-bedroom duplex in a working-class neighborhood here.

Late that year, federal agents audited employee records of ABM Industries Inc., forcing it to shed all the illegal workers on its payrolls in the Twin Cities. Among them was the couple, undocumented immigrants who had worked at ABM for more than a decade.

Shortly after, Alba and Eugenio, who declined to have their surname published, landed at a small janitorial concern, scrubbing car dealerships for about half the pay, without benefits. Earlier this year that employer, too, was hit by an immigration audit. In late February, Alba and Eugenio were let go.

Today, the couple is struggling to make ends meet, working part-time and often relying on handouts from food banks to feed their family.

The journey from prosperity to the economic margins followed by Alba and Eugenio is an increasingly common path for thousands of undocumented workers pushed out of their jobs by the federal government's audits of U.S. businesses, according to immigration experts, business owners and unions.

The audits, started by the Obama administration in 2009, put the onus on business to police workers, requiring companies to turn over employee records to federal agents. If the papers aren't in order, the workers are quietly let go without penalty while the companies are punished.

full: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB20001424053111904480904...

via: http://washingtonindependent.com/114983/wsj-illegal-imm...
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itsrobert Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 01:10 PM
Response to Original message
1. About time
Time for them to head back to their own country.
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crunchie Donating Member (21 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 05:19 PM
Response to Reply #1
8. corporations have been
taking advantage of undocumented workers for years, and yes, can treat them anyway they please. I am happy that they now have to pay large fines having employed these workers.
Now itsrobert, you can pay triple the amount for the fruit you will be eating, because you would not apply for the jobs these very hard working people do in the farm and hospitality industry. I hope this couple can apply for legal status.
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itsrobert Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 05:34 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. I will if people are paid a fair wage
Now crunchie, why should I take advantage of someone being abused by their employer?
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saras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 05:55 PM
Response to Reply #1
10. You first.
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itsrobert Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 07:04 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. My country was taken away
Can you guess where that may be?
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demosincebirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
2. You'll be damned if you do and damned if you don't. Whats the answer?
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phantom power Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 01:12 PM
Response to Original message
3. I approve of audits. Puts the responsibility on the businesses, where it belongs.
Also more cost effective than going after individual undocumented immigrants.
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demosincebirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 01:32 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. It's been the employers responsibility, under the law, to screen applicants for
years. Companies can pay undocumented immigrants a lot less without the fear of someone squawking.
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. So if you do not want to hold the employers responsible then what
do you want? Chasing people all over the country did not work. I for one would like worker permits for jobs that truly need more workers such as farm labor. You hire a worker without a permit for a job other than the one he/she is certified for then you pay a big fine and much of the money collected as fines would go to help the workers get safely home.
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demosincebirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 03:11 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. When the employers are forced to enforce this law, they go crying to
their republican friends in Washington and as a result, the feds are told to lay-off. Like they always say, "money talks."
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 05:14 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. So the biggest bitchers (rethugs) are the real problem. Just another
political angle for them.
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demosincebirth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-15-11 06:13 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. Yes sir, they know how to optimize all the hot button issues. nt
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