Ruling Makes Federal Contractors Responsible For Immigration Status | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Ruling Makes Federal Contractors Responsible For Immigration Status

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The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and a trade association representing contractors failed to block a federal law known as E-Verify. It requires employers who obtain government contracts to check employment eligibility first against government databases.

Gerry Fritz is spokesman for the Associated Builders and Contractors. He says E-verify is a cumbersome computer program that requires new hires to be checked against more than 425 million records in the Social Security Administration's databases and more than 60 million records at the Department of Homeland Security.

Unions are also critical of E-Verify. Ana Avendano, Director of the Immigrant Worker Program of the AFL-CIO, says the law doesn't address a larger problem - the vulnerability of undocumented workers.

Employers say they'll comply but insist the law leaves them vulnerable to legal action if someone were denied employment because of an electronic mistake.

Jamila Bey reports...

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