Today, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano spoke at the Center for American Progress about the need for immigration reform while reinforcing the Obama Administration’s commitment to worksite enforcement and the expansion of E-Verify. Below is an excerpt from her prepared remarks concerning I-9 and E-Verify issues. Note the recent surge in E-Verify registration: approaching 2,000 employers per week.
Furthermore, we’ve transformed worksite enforcement to truly address the demand side of illegal immigration. We are auditing the books of thousands of employers suspected of relying on illegal labor to achieve an unfair advantage in the marketplace. As part of this effort, Immigration and Customs Enforcement audited more employers suspected of hiring illegal labor in a single day in July than had been audited in all of 2008. We’re also encouraging workplace compliance by expanding and improving the E-Verify system—an Internet-based system that allows participating employers to electronically verify the employment eligibility of new hires. More than 167,000 employers at 639,000 worksites use E-Verify. In the past month, the program has grown at the rate of nearly 2,000 employers per week.
Improved interior and worksite enforcement is a critical part of comprehensive immigration reform. We’ve demonstrated that when it comes to that issue, this Administration is committed to action.