US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has largely ended its attempts to enforce the laws regarding the hiring of undocumented immigrants in the United States, according to a new report. The Center for Immigration Studies says that the amount of workplace audits fell from 3,127 two years ago to just 181 in the opening five months of the 2015 fiscal year.
In 2013 the number of employers charged with employing undocumented immigrants was 179; however, so far in the current fiscal year the number is just 27. The report claims that the shift in policy was first mentioned in an ICE memo back in 2009, with the agency being told to focus its attention on the personnel records of select businesses rather than conducting raids on companies suspected of hiring undocumented immigrants.
“Robust worksite enforcement programs produce numerous public benefits, including deterring illegal hiring, exposing exploitative workplace conditions and tax violations, punishing unscrupulous employers, uncovering document fraud rings and other criminal activity and, most importantly, restoring job opportunities for legal workers,” the report claims. “When considering the allocation of funding for ICE programs, Congress should take care that this critical form of enforcement, which addresses both land crossers and overstayers, is restored to a higher priority.”
This week Texas announced that it will spend $800m on border security over the course of the next two years. The state intends to spend the money on a new crime data center, hiring new law enforcement personnel to watch over the border, a new surveillance airplane, and a training facility.