Basta Pinoy News
  Listen to Radio
  Watch video clips
  Daily Horoscope

Filipino Channel
Filipino newspaper edition Washington DC Maryland Viriginia
Basta Pinoy News
Filipino entertainment news
Basta Pinoy Entertainment Digest
Filam Community News and Videos
Filamvision TV
Filam Community News
Filam News Digest
Politics, Empowerment, Advocacy
Immigration Q and A
Immigration Q and A
Advertising in South Florida Profiles in Health
Ê Print this Page email article Email Article  Share Story

US Immigration

Posted 5/08/2009

Shift in Immigration Enforcement

Until recently, the enforcement of immigration laws focused on the removal and deportation of undocumented aliens, particularly unauthorized workers caught during random immigration raids.

Last April 30, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it will shift its focus to the criminal prosecution of employers who knowingly hire unauthorized workers. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) bureau is tasked with enforcing this directive.

DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said that the change in enforcement emphasis is aimed at targeting the root cause of illegal immigration which is the unscrupulous hiring practices of employers of undocumented aliens. At the same time, it will curtail massive document fraud and social security abuse by individuals who resort to these illegal schemes to secure jobs in the U.S.

In the past, immigration raids largely targeted the workers. In 2008, among the over 6,000 arrested, only 135 were employers. These raids resulted in 1,100 being prosecuted criminally and 5,100 workers being charged with immigration violations. The blanket raids usually were based on mere tips without adequate time to conduct an investigation and gather evidence.
The shift in worksite enforcement was an offshoot of a recent raid last February 24 in Bellingham, Washington that resulted in the arrest and detention of 28 workers at the Yamato Engine Specialists. The lack of procedural due process during this raid caused immigrant rights organizations to urge DHS Secretary Napolitano to look into the possible harsh treatment of the arrested workers and the possible violation of their civil rights.

To assuage the employers’ fears of immediate crackdowns, ICE also announced that it will not randomly target employers without adequate basis. Its investigations and arrests will be based on intelligence garnered from a variety of sources such as tips from the public, reports from the company’s current or former employees, even referrals from other law enforcement agencies.

While the enforcement will largely be focused on erring employers hiring illegal workers, the ICE will continue to arrest and process for removal undocumented workers found during these raids. However, to afford them due process, it will obtain search warrants, indictments and arrests, or a commitment from the U.S. Attorney’s Office to prosecute a suspected erring employer prior to arresting its workers or employees at the worksite.

It will continue to consider humanitarian factors in enforcing the law. Existing humanitarian guidelines include allowing the release of people who are the only caretakers of children or seriously ill relatives, pregnant women, nursing mothers or those with medical conditions or disabled, in raids involving more that 25 employees. This threshold number was lowered from the prior policy that required at least 150 employees.

The new initiative sends a strong message that the DHS will not tolerate exploitation and abuse of unauthorized workers, as well as violation of immigration and labor laws. The goal of these efforts is to reduce the demand for unauthorized workers in order to protect the employment opportunities of the country’s legal workforce.

These efforts purportedly lay the groundwork for the Comprehensive Immigration Reforms as envisioned by President Barack Obama. Through these reforms, he seeks to remove incentives for individuals to enter the country illegally by cracking down on employers who hire undocumented immigrants, protect the rights of workers, in general, by making their working conditions safe and viable, and support the country’s economic recovery by ensuring an orderly immigration and labor system.

has been practicing law for over 30 years and is included in the Marquis Who’s Who in American Law. A former law editor and professor, he is also the author of a book on immigrant experiences. He has spoken in international and national conventions and has been interviewed on radio and television, including the ABC Nightly News. He has participated in meetings with White House staff and the Immigration Commissioner to discuss immigration reforms. For his community service and advocacy, he has received numerous awards in the U.S. and abroad. For more information, you may log on to his website at or call (212) 695-5281
Terms of Use. Privacy Policy. Disclaimer.

Domain hosting as low as 9.99
Popular Topics
‘Short Sale’ of Real Estate Can Help Homeowners Lenders, Avoid Costly Foreclosure Proceedings
Making Money in Real Estate: Mistakes to Avoid
Are You a Landlord or Want to Become One? If So, Screen Your Tenants!
Business News Feed