The House Appropriations Committee made a serious mistake when it approved an amendment to the stimulus bill (the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) that would require all businesses and other public or private “entities” that contract to receive money from the stimulus package to use the flawed federal Basic Pilot/E-Verify program. This will not only delay use of stimulus funds, but will hurt millions of workers. It should be stripped from the bill.
The E-Verify provision in the stimulus will:
• Harm workers who are either falsely denied work or are targeted by employers abusing the E-verify program;
• Create substantial new burdens for businesses, especially small businesses, at precisely the wrong time;
• Send the wrong signal to new voters that the Congress prefers to play politics by enacting symbolic and ineffective immigration “enforcement” measures over serious and effective economic stimulus or serious immigration reform.
1. Call Speaker Nancy Pelosi (head of Democratic Leadership) at 202-225-0100.
2. Call Chairman Obey (chair of the House Appropriations committee) at 202-225-3365.
3. Call Democrats who sit on the appropriations committee if you live in their state.
4. Tell them:
• You are extremely disappointed that the E-Verify requirement was included on the Stimulus and you want the provision stripped from the bill.
• Including E-verify in the stimulus package completely undercuts the purpose of the bill and will only be counterproductive for American business, workers and the economy.
• Real solutions to our economic problems and immigration reform should be approached seriously and separately.
• The flawed E-Verify program’s database errors will wrongly workers their jobs.
FAIR (the Federation for American Immigration Reform) just sent out an alert to its very active network to call committee members in support of this provision. We need to counter their calls.