Support for Legal Workforce Act (HR 2885)

9/22/2011
Letters to Congress

​ September 14, 2011

The Honorable Lamar Smith 
Chairman
Committee on the Judiciary 
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Chairman Smith: 

On behalf of the American Council on International Personnel (ACIP), I am writing in support of the Legal Workforce Act (H.R. 2885), which would create a uniform federal electronic employment eligibility verification system.  We believe this reform will remove much of the current confusion surrounding employment verification. 

ACIP is the leading trade association that advocates for sound business immigration policy.  Our members consist of over 220 of America’s largest companies, universities and non-profit research institutions.  We represent the in-house human resource and legal professionals who are responsible for verifying the employment eligibility of employees at locations across the United States.  ACIP members work hard daily to balance their verification duties with nondiscrimination requirements; a uniform federal law is central to their efforts to treat all applicants and employees fairly at all locations throughout the United States. 

We want to thank you for including in the legislation federal preemption of the rapidly changing patchwork of state and local laws.  Given the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America et al. v. Whiting et al., we believe this bill strikes an appropriate balance and would strongly urge the Judiciary Committee to keep these provisions intact during the mark.

We also want to thank you for including a biometric pilot program.  For electronic verification to be truly effective at ending unauthorized employment, employers must be assured that employees are who they claim to be.  An effective biometric program is the ultimate solution to this problem, and we strongly urge the Judiciary Committee to retain these provisions.   

Last, we applaud you for allowing employers some flexibility to determine whether or not to re-verify existing employees.  Many federal contractors have already re-verified employees and other employers are in industries where the likelihood of uncovering an unauthorized worker is very small but the expense of re-verifying the entire workforce is very great.  We would encourage the Judiciary Committee leave these provisions intact.

We thank you again for introducing the Legal Workforce Act, and we look forward to continuing to work with you to develop a verification system that works for America’s employers.  

Respectfully submitted,

Lynn Shotwell
Executive Director

cc: The Honorable John Conyers, Jr.​​

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ACIP letter HR 2885 9-14-11.pdf

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