Thursday, July 2, 2009

ICE starts workplace immigration crackdown

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency issued Notices of Inspection (NOIs) to 652 businesses nationwide yesterday. This is more than ICE issued in all of the last fiscal year. The notices warn the employers that ICE will be examining their records to ensure that the companies have been complying with employment verification procedures.

This focus on employers is consistent with the Obama administration's promises to direct resources in the worksite enforcement program towards the criminal prosecution of employers who knowingly hire illegal workers in order to target the root cause of illegal immigration. See this blog post for more details.

For yesterday's ICE news release, see here. It states that
The 652 businesses being presented with a NOI today for a Form I-9 audit have been selected for inspection as a result of leads and information obtained through other investigative means. Due to the ongoing, law enforcement sensitive nature of these audits, the names and locations of the businesses will not be released at this time.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

H-1B cap count updated - now 44,800

USCIS has updated the H-1B cap count. As of June 30, 2009, the agency has 44,800 cases against the regular (non-Master's) H-1B cap, compared with 47,500 on May 29. For more information, see the previous blog post here.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

New State Department Pamphlet on Nonimmigrant Rights

The Department of State has published a pamphlet educating nonimmigrant visa holders on their rights. The pamphlet covers the visa process, important documents, workplace and employee rights, human trafficking, and how to file a complaint. This is a very useful document, not just for immigrants. As quoted in the publication,
The U.S. Government has issued this pamphlet to honor the rule of law and uphold the dignity of all who come to this country. The U.S. Government is committed to combating human trafficking and labor rights violations.