The Biden administration has ended the targeting of immigrants with workplace raids and shifting the enforcement focus to employers.
Biden Puts An End To Trump’s Workplace Terrorism Campaign
Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas directed U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to take actions to promote a fair labor market by supporting more effective enforcement of wage protections, workplace safety, labor rights, and other employment laws and standards.
“The Department of Homeland Security has a critical role to ensure our Nation’s workplaces comply with our laws,” said Secretary Mayorkas. “We will not tolerate unscrupulous employers who exploit unauthorized workers, conduct illegal activities, or impose unsafe working conditions. Employers engaged in illegal acts compel the focus of our enforcement resources. By adopting policies that focus on the most unscrupulous employers, we will protect workers as well as legitimate American businesses.”
In accordance with a memorandum issued by Secretary Mayorkas on October 12, ICE, CBP, and USCIS will develop and update policies to enhance the Department’s impact in supporting the enforcement of employment and labor standards. The agencies must also develop strategies for prioritizing workplace enforcement against unscrupulous employers and, through the exercise of prosecutorial discretion, facilitate the participation of vulnerable workers in labor standards investigations.
The memorandum also establishes an end to mass worksite enforcement operations. Under the previous administration, these resource-intensive operations resulted in the simultaneous arrest of hundreds of workers and were used as a tool by exploitative employers to suppress and retaliate against workers’ assertion of labor laws.
The Raids Backfired And Helped Illegal Employers
The workplace raids were a terrible Trump policy that helped employers who were breaking the law exploit immigrants. The message being sent by the Biden administration is that rounding up and deporting immigrants who otherwise aren’t breaking the law will not be a priority.
The raids were time-consuming, expensive, and a waste of DHS resources for what was nothing more than a terrorist campaign designed to scare workers and appeal to Trump’s base.
The money that was being wasted on these raids should be spent on beefing up the processing of immigration cases. Trump gutted the entire immigration system, which the Biden administration is rebuilding.
Immigration raids only terrify immigrants and help illegal employers. It is a bad policy, and Biden is doing the right thing by putting an end to it.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association