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Posted by Rawa Law Group APC on 10/19/2017

Immigrants and the Horrible Truth About Exploitation

Immigrants and the Horrible Truth About Exploitation

What happens if an immigrant has been working for a company for some time but all of a sudden, their employer decides to refuse them payment for their services? This is what happened to one immigrant named Jose Ucelo Gonzalez, who was cursed at and had the police called on him when he asked for his day’s wages. The local contractor did so because he was falsely accusing him of robbery. And yes, Jose won the case when his charges were dropped – however, what he sustained afterwards was much worse. Because, in this unfortunate case, he was handed over to immigration enforcement agents.

The truth is, any employee has a right to be paid if they were doing their rightful work. To go hand in hand with that, an employee who has been abused by his or her boss should always be able to come forward without fear and speak up about the abuses in the workplace. However, for many illegal immigrants, they face the horrible truth that they may be exploited and turned into services, unable to work or remain in the country that they love and feel most safe.

Many laws have been put in place that say that illegal immigrants should not be hired in the first place. However, many more laws are also put in place to stop employers from retaliating against employees. A recent report by the National Employment Law Project says that there are laws in place intended to stop employers from hiring undocumented workers; however, now these same employers are getting away with abuse and dodging immigration laws altogether where it benefits them most. However, the California State Senate works against this and has attempted to enact tougher penalties to discourage wrongful retaliation by employers. This is because of the simple fact that employers will often times manipulate the dysfunctional immigration system to intimidate workers and use their jobs against them. 

Rights of Workers

Although many people may not know it, immigrants have rights as well. In fact, they are afforded numerous protections that some may not be aware of. The Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1990 protects immigrant workers in certain aspects. It says that employers are acting illegally if they hire workers that they know do not possess permission to work in the U.S., hire any worker without an Employment Eligibility Verification Form, and continue to employ an undocumented worker even when they know they are one.

To understand the legalities involved, one must understand what documents are needed for immigrants wanting to work in the U.S. Some of these employment authorization documents include a social security card, a resident citizen identification card, voter registration cards, and much, much more. 

The Immigration Act works as a way to make numerous employer actions illegal. Are you a worker who believes you have been discriminated against in the workplace? If you believe that your employer has violated the law and you are suffering because of it, you should give us a call today. Our Immigration Lawyers Los Angeles at RAWA Law Group, we have your best interest at heart and can help you if you are an immigrant who was denied certain rights.

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