Today, former Congressman Bruce A. Morrison testified before the Virginia Small Business Commission, urging the Commonwealth of Virginia to reject requests to make E-Verify mandatory for all U.S. employers in the state. Speaking on behalf of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), Mr. Morrison noted that while E-Verify has provided a fairly reliable option for employers wishing to participate in a pilot program, it remains inadequate for the task of verifying all new hires. In particular, he offered the following criticisms of the E-Verify system:
• The SSA database is flawed, with a 4.1% error rate in SS records
• The error rate will hamper the ability of legal workers to obtain jobs
• E-Verify remains a paper-based system as employers must still complete the I-9 form and analyze one or more of 25 documents establishing identity and/or work authorization
• E-Verify is unable to detect many forms of document fraud and identity theft
Mr. Morrison also advocated the need for a federal solution to employment eligibility verification, noting that dozens of states have already enacted a confusing and complex patchwork of E-Verify legislation – a problem particularly acute for multi-state businesses. Mr. Morrison wrapped up his comments with an endorsement of the New Employee Verification ACT (NEVA) which was re-introduced in Congress earlier this year.
Mr. Morrison’s entire statement is available here.