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Statement Of The American Immigration Lawyers Association On EEOC Guidance

Cite as "AILA InfoNet Doc. No. 99110412 (posted Nov. 4, 1999)"

Statement Of  The American Immigration Lawyers Association On EEOC Guidance

The American Immigration Lawyers Association welcomes the EEOC guidance, which  underscores that undocumented workers are entitled to basic civil rights protections.  However, we are concerned that the EEOC's specific approach may put the vast majority of employers who are sincerely trying to comply with the law in an untenable position.  In essence, employers now must chose between a potential discrimination claim or  potential monetary or even criminal penalties under employer sanctions legislation when presented with an employee whose work documentation might be questionable. The EEOC Enforcement Guidance, as it relates to the remedies of reinstatement, instatement, and back pay liability, is irreconcilable with the mandates of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986.

This dilemma illustrates the flaws central to the employer sanctions system introduced by the 1986 act: it has failed to realize its objective of controlling U.S. borders, compliance is enormously expensive for the business community, and it subjects thousands of employers and legal U. S. workers to needless hardship.

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