The Time for E-Verify is Now!

By Kim McCarthy

If you could give jobs to unemployed Americans and immigrants who are legally documented to work in the U.S. would you do it? Can you think of any reason not to? Personally, I can’t imagine anyone with the ability to do so choosing not to hire American citizens or legally documented immigrants. Politicians in our own backyard have no problem talking about what they will do about debt and unemployment levels, yet they lack the courage and political will to take simple actions at their disposal that are provided by law. 

Ask yourself why. Who and what are these politicians protecting that could be more important than restoring jobs to local families, enabling them to pay their mortgages, buy gas or purchase groceries to feed their families? Could it be personal ambition, favoritism to those with special interests or political pandering for votes?

The United States is facing the most severe economic downturn since the Great Depression. Unemployment rates hover around 10 to 15%; some say the figure is even higher. Businesses are closing at a rapid rate here in San Juan Capistrano. Unemployed families should be a top prity for our local officials. 

U.S. law requires companies to employ only individuals who are legally authorized to work in the U.S. E-Verify is an internet-based system that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the US. E-Verify is fast, free and easy to use - and it’s the best way employers can ensure a legal workforce. The Federal Government supports it and offers it as one of the tools to combat the high numbers of Americans out of work. 

On May 26th, the US Supreme Court rejected attempts by the Chamber of Commerce and Justice Department to protect illegal workers and their employers. Arizona and more than a dozen other states have already initiated various versions of E-Verify. Our own Congressman Ken Calvert is one of the original authors of the E-Verify program. 

While the previous City Council implemented E-Verify for city employees and contractors doing business with our city, Mayor Sam Allevato refused to follow the lead of other cities that require all businesses operating in their cities to utilize E-Verify. When this issue was put on the agenda by former council member Lon Uso, the council members at the time (Sam Allevato, Mark Neilsen, Laura Freese and Tom Hribar) refused to support it. These four would not even explore implementing E-Verify. I find it disgraceful that four of five of our elected leaders in San Juan Capistrano don’t have the will to protect American jobs. 

Mayor Allevato’s excuse is that this is a “Federal issue”, but the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld most of the Arizona law and many cities have successfully implemented the E-Verify program for all businesses. As a retired government employee and consultant whose pension is guaranteed for life by us taxpayers, I understand that Mayor Allevato isn’t affected by the current economic devastation to local families. But isn’t his job to protect all our interests? Wouldn’t jobs be at the top of the list? I say hold these elected officials accountable! E-mail your city council at and demand San Juan Capistrano implement E-Verify as mandatory for businesses operating in our city, in order to restore jobs to legally documented immigrants and American Citizens.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Per our conversation at Loew's a couple of weeks ago, Laura will support and propose e-verify be mandatory for all SJC businesses. The other council members need to be lobbied. The time is right to make a stand!

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