President Obama on E-Verify

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President Obama reiterated his commitment to comprehensive immigration reform Wednesday, but said the overall initiative must go beyond E-Verify – “an effective, though imperfect, tool that needs improvement.” At the press conference in the White House last week, President Obama avoided answering whether he would sign a mandatory E-Verify law if Congress presented one to him. “If you receive a mandatory E-Verify bill only, without legalization, are you planning to veto that bill?” a reporter asked the President. “We need comprehensive immigration reform,” replied the President. “I’ve said it before, I will say it again, I will say it next week and I’ll say it six months from now.” Indicating he wanted an amnesty attached to the E-Verify legislation, the President added, “We may not be able to get everything that I would like to see in a package, but we have to have a balanced package.”

“E-Verify can be an important enforcement tool if it’s not riddled with errors, if U.S. citizens are protected – because what I don’t want is a situation in which employers are forced to set up a system that they can’t be certain works,” Obama said. “And we don’t want to expose employers to the risk where they end up rejecting a qualified candidate for a job because the list says that that person is an illegal immigrant, and it turns out that the person isn’t an illegal immigrant. Obama said enforcing tough security, a pathway toward US citizenship and a system that holds employers accountable for the immigrant workers they hire are all important steps toward fixing the nation’s “broken” immigration system.

In a wide-ranging press conference at the White House, the president repeated his quest to fix the nation’s broken immigration system — but said any repair would have to balance tough security, a pathway toward legalization, and enforcement that protects, and holds accountable, employers and the immigrant workers they hire.

Supporters of E-Verify have claimed that it is critically needed to prevent illegal immigrants from securing U.S jobs, especially those funded by federal stimulus funds. Those opposed to E-Verify have maintained that the system improperly flags a large number of eligible workers as being ineligible for U.S. employment. Many have also expressed concern over the scalability of the system.

Up to now, E-Verify has been a mostly voluntary program, but that is changing. All federal contractors and subcontractors, for instance, are required to use E-Verify to vet the employment eligibility of their workers. Several states and local governments are also moving towards making E-Verify mandatory for employers.

EMPTrust can help you with your I-9 and E-Verification process. EMPTrust’s software application allows companies to manage I-9 forms and seamlessly integrate with employment eligibility verification (E-Verify) all at one go.

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