WASHINGTON – Senator Chuck Grassley today is continuing his efforts to give employers the opportunity to verify the work eligibility of their employees. Grassley introduced an amendment to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Bill currently being debated in the Senate that would allow an employer to verify the work status of all workers, not just new hires, through the E-verify program.
"Employers want to abide by the law and hire people who are legally in this country. Right now, E-Verify only allows them to check prospective employees. It just makes common sense to allow employers the opportunity to access this free, online database system to check all their workers," Grassley said. "When people enter this country illegally, they create undue delays and hardship for people following the rules. E-verify is an effective tool to fight illegal immigrants who break the law."
Earlier today, the Senate voted in favor of an amendment offered by Senator Jeff Sessions that made permanent the E-verify program.
E-verify, formerly the basic pilot program, was first authorized in 1996 allowing only six states to participate. The program was reauthorized in 2001 and then expanded in 2003. The last expansion allowed employers in all 50 states the opportunity to voluntarily use the program. President George W. Bush signed an executive order in August 2007 that required contractors to use E-verify for any employees performing work for the federal government. The Obama Administration has postponed this rule several times, but announced today that it would require some employees to be verified through the system if they receive government contracts.