E-Verify, E-gads

By July 10, 2008Human Resources

Secretary Chertoff and the folks at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) are continuing their public relations campaign promoting E-Verify and increased immigration worksite enforcement. In the Secretary’s latest blog post from July 9, he attempts to separate fact from fiction about the DHS and Social Security Administration’s employment verification program. However, check out item #5 which starts out with, “E-Verify is a proven tool currently used by more than 73,000 employers nationwide, with another 1,000 employers enrolling every week. I’d venture to say that if the system didn’t work or was riddled with errors, very few employers would want to use it.”

Let’s explore what is wrong with this logic. There are approximately seven million employers in the country. Seventy-three thousand enrolled employers only represent 1.04% of all employers. If a manufacturing company made a consumer product that only 1% of the population wanted, that would be considered a big flop. Employers are finding problems with the system, which is why very few employers want to use it.

And on that point about 1,000 employers signing up each week – they are not signing up by choice. Many have been forced to enroll due to new mandates by state governments. Prior to these mandates, the program had a total enrollment over a decade that was less than 30,000 – hardly a groundswell of support and buy-in from the employer community.

As to the rest of point #5, check out this podcast from Cato where they have begun to examine some of the details behind those tentative non-confirmation numbers. Let’s just hope someone from DHS listens to it too.

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