For Immediate Release // Please Excuse Cross Posting
Tuesday, November 16, 2021
Media Contact:
Viridiana Vidal (702) 206-2110 //

Senate Hearing Raises Expectations For Biden Administration on Immigrant Worker Rights:
Senator Booker and Secretary Mayorkas Make Case for Deferred Action Status

“I’m wondering about the threat of deportation and how that’s serving as a deterrent to immigrant workers who might otherwise speak up about unsafe conditions…”

See full video of the exchange here

New York, NY. – This morning, US Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testified on the administration’s border & immigration policies before the Senate Judiciary Committee. During one particular exchange between Senator Booker (D, NJ) and Secretary Mayorkas, there was an acknowledgment that the Biden Administration can and should do more to incentivize immigrant workers to serve as whistleblowers if they work at abusive job sites.

In reaction, Nadia Marin Molina, Co-Executive Director at the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, issued the following statement:

“Both Senator Booker and Secretary Mayorkas correctly pointed out that immigration enforcement is currently undermining labor enforcement to the detriment of everyone, and they both agreed that predatory employers should be held accountable from the top down, but crucially, the exchange demonstrated agreement about how policy must be created to incentivize bottom-up reporting of labor abuse.

“We were particularly pleased to see Secretary Mayorkas highlight the prospect of deferred action status for immigrant workers. We now hope and expect President Biden will do everything within his power to give immigrant workers the protection, respect, and rights they deserve.” said Nadia Marin Molina.

US Senator Booker’s comment highlighted the important work of denouncing unscrupulous employers – like workers did in Las Vegas – and the need for protections for the poultry workers in Mississippi impacted by the 2019 ICE raids. An effort that the National Day Laborer Organizing Network has been leading along with partner organizations, through their DALE campaign, and most recently has convened a Blue Ribbon Commission of workers and allies to ensure these commitments turn into real protections for immigrant workers.