Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the issuance of 1,000 additional I-9 Audit notices to employers across the country, focusing in particular on those providing critical infrastructure and other key resources. This number is on top of the 654 I-9 audit notices issued earlier this year. Speaking at today’s workforce symposium in Washington, DC, Assistant Secretary John Morton (of ICE) reiterated the agency’s commitment towards creating a culture of voluntary compliance through aggressive investigations and outreach programs. Assistant Secretary Morton also provided recent statistics, showing the increased level of investigations and fines. The following table illustrates the dramatic increase in worksite enforcement this year:
|Enforcement||Since April 30, 2009||All of FY 2008|
|Form I-9 Inspections||1,069||503|
|Total Fines Assessed||$15, 865,181 (142 notices)||$2,355,330 (32 notices)|
|Final Orders||$798,179 (45 orders)||$196,523|
|Debarred from federal contracts||45 businesses/47 individuals||0 businesses/1 individual|
In addition, DHS released statistics from the 654 notices which were sent in July 2009. Of particular interest, the ICE agents identified roughly 14,000 suspect documents (16% of all viewed); assessed over $2 million in fines; and let 326 employers off with a warning.
The press release announcing these findings (and the new audits) is available here.