By NWV Senior Political News Writer, Jim Kouri
A Colorado company raised the ire of Attorney General Jeff Sessions in its hiring practice of favoring immigrants over Americans — even Latino Americans. The lawsuit described how citizens, for example, were forced to undergo drug tests while immigrants received waivers on background checks and drug testing.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit on Thursday accusing an agricultural company of discrimination for refusing to hire American citizens applying for seasonal positions. The company is based in Loveland, Colorado, but has facilities located in other states such as Texas.
The acting assistant attorney general in the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division, John G. Gore, claims Crop Production Services Inc. violated the Immigration and Nationality Act.
The DOJ complaint states plainly that Crop Production Services discriminated against three American citizens of Latino heritage: Ramiro Torres, Ramiro Salinas, and Javier Salinas, “based on their citizenship status” and the fact they are not illegal aliens or President Barack Obama’s immigrant tsunami participants.
“It’s outrageous! You have three Americans who complied with U.S. immigration law and became legal citizens, but they were ‘iced’ out of jobs to benefit foreigners,” said former police detective Iris Aquino. “This case illustrates the Deep State’s intentional replacement of Americans with immigrants more willing to vote for liberal-left candidates and more likely to accept neo-Socialism in the U.S,” she added.
The DOJ argues the company put these individuals through a more rigorous hiring and vetting process and denied them jobs as seasonal workers at a rice breeding facility in El Campo, Texas. The company instead filled all its positions with “H-2A visa holders from Mexico.”
The law states: “The H-2A program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. A U.S. employer,a U.S. agent as described in the regulations,or an association of U.S. agricultural producers named as a joint employer must file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, on a prospective worker’s behalf.”
Under the INA, it is unlawful for employers to intentionally discriminate against U.S. workers because of their citizenship status or to otherwise favor the employment of temporary foreign workers over available, qualified U.S. workers. In addition, the H-2A visa program requires employers to recruit and hire available, qualified U.S. workers before hiring temporary foreign workers.
“In the spirit of President Trump’s Executive Order on Buy American and Hire American, the Department of Justice will not tolerate employers who discriminate against U.S. workers because of a desire to hire temporary foreign visa holders,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement announcing the lawsuit. “The Justice Department will enforce the Immigration and Nationality Act in order to protect U.S. workers as they are the very backbone of our communities and our economy.”
“Where there is a job available, U.S. workers should have a chance at it before we bring in workers from abroad,” Sessions said.
The DOJ accused Crop Production of preferring “to hire temporary foreign workers under the H-2A visa program,” and they discouraged American citizens from working at the facility.
“For instance, the complaint alleges that whereas U.S. citizens had to complete a background check and a drug test before being permitted to start work, H-2A workers were allowed to begin working without completing them and, in some cases, never completed them,” the DOJ said. “The complaint also states that Crop Production did not hire a limited-English proficient U.S. citizen for employment but they instead hired H-2A workers who could not speak [any] English.”
The Immigration and Nationality Act prohibits companies from deliberately discriminating based on American citizenship status.
“In addition, the H-2A visa program requires employers to recruit and hire available, qualified U.S. workers before hiring temporary foreign workers,” the DOJ said.
The DOJ is seeking back pay for Torres and Ramiro and Javier Salinas, civil penalties, and remedial relief in the lawsuit.
“Specifically, [Crop Production] refused to allow Javier and Ramiro Salinas to start working in Seasonal Technician jobs at [Crop Production’s] rice breeding facility in El Campo, Texas, during the 2016 work season, and refused to interview Ramiro Torres for a Seasonal Technician job during the 2016 season, because [Crop Production] preferred to hire only temporary foreign workers for those jobs rather than employing qualified U.S. workers such as the Injured Parties,” the complaint states.
The complaint adds that on at least two occasions, visa holders from Mexico who were hired were given Social Security Numbers by Crop Production after they started work.
“For decades, low-skilled and unskilled immigration into the United States has surged, depressing wages and harming America’s most vulnerable citizens,” the White House said. “The RAISE Act follows through on President Trump’s promise to reform our immigration system to put America first.”
ILLEGAL ALIENS HIRED BY MAJOR CORPORATION
One of the largest tree and brushwood removing companies in the U.S. entered a guilty plea for hiring and re-hiring hundreds of illegal alien employees. The company’s CEO was ordered to pay over $90 million to the DOJ.
Asplundh Tree Experts, based in Pennsylvania’s Willow Grove, have been contracted by utility companies like PECO (Philadelphia utility company), PSE&G (a New Jersey utility), and others. The company maintains the areas surrounding electric and gas lines.
U.S. attorney special assistant Josh Davison said the evidence points to the Asplundh management ignoring immigration lawbreaking for years while work was being done by illegal immigrants.
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