A project of the Center for Community Change

Rep. Loefgren’s staff snubbed by Basic Pilot Program

The Basic Pilot Program allows businesses to use an electronic database to verify the eligibity of new employees to work in the US. We’ve been saying for years that the system is HIGHLY flawed and offers many false positives, but recently Rep. Loefgren hit that lesson home.

“During the hearing, Lofgren recounted a story about what happened to her new immigration counsel – Traci Hong. Hong, who came to the U.S. legally from Korea when she was 10, became a naturalized citizen in 1992 at age 22. Yet when she came to work for Lofgren’s panel, which uses Basic Pilot to verify its staff’s employment status, the database reported that she was not legally entitled to work in the U.S.

“We need a better system,” said Lofgren, who pointed out even though Hong was able to straighten her case out, that workers who don’t have a law degree and don’t work for the chair of the immigration subcommittee might not find it easy to correct such an error. After the session, Hong told reporters that she had to make three trips to the Social Security Administration liaison office and to the House personnel office to get the issue of her work eligibility straightened out.” Read the rest of the story HERE

For ANY employment verification system to be incorporated into comprehensive immigration reform we need to ensure that careless errors such as this will not compromise upstanding workers.

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