As reported by the Los Angeles Times, federal contractors and subcontractors will soon be required to verify that their employees are eligible to work in the United States.
Beginning September 8, 2009, the government will award contracts only to companies that enroll in E-Verify, an online program that uses federal databases to check whether employees are in the country legally and authorized to work. Businesses receiving money under the federal stimulus program also will be subjected to the rule.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano recently announced the Administration’s support for the regulation that would award federal contracts only to employers who use E-Verify to check employee work authorization. In addition, the DHS intends to rescind the Social Security "No-Match" Rule – which would have allowed the federal government to use mismatched Social Security data to find illegal immigrants in the workplace – in favor of the more modern and effective E-Verify system.
Napolitano's move comes one week after her department notified more than 650 businesses nationwide of pending audits of their employment records. The DHS also recently issued guidelines for immigration agents to go after employers rather than just workers.
Supporters of E-Verify said the expansion of the effort to federal contractors and subcontractors would help crack down on illegal immigrants in the workforce and could help stem the flow of migrants across the border.
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