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US bishops’ immigration campaign urges opposition to E-Verify expansion

Catholic World News - June 16, 2011

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Justice for Immigrants campaign is urging Catholics to oppose the expansion of E-Verify in the absence of comprehensive immigration reform. E-Verify is the federal government’s Internet-based system that allows employers to determine whether workers are eligible to work in the United States.

“Unless Congress legalizes unauthorized immigrants, mandatory E-Verify will begin with a handicap of 8 million unauthorized workers who will be driven further into the underground economy, hurting both the US economy and workers by decreasing federal tax revenue by more than $17.3 billion over ten years, creating an unequal workplace, and lowering labor standards for all workers,” according to Justice for Immigrants. “Because of well-documented flaws in the Government databases upon which it relies, E-Verify does not detect over half of the undocumented workers entered in the system, yet results in false positives for hundreds of thousands of American workers.”

“We urge you to let your Senators and Members know that unless and until the E-Verify program is improved and undertaken in the context of comprehensive immigration reform, you oppose its expansion and mandatory implementation.”

The Justice for Immigrants campaign, launched by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and 19 other organizations in 2005, is part of the US bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services office.

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  • Posted by: GabrielAustin9013 - Jun. 17, 2011 11:21 AM ET USA

    The underlying question is whether it is the Catholic bishops who are proposing this statement, or whether it is the bureaucrats of the USCCB. Have bishops the knowledge or the energy to make such recommendations? Would they not do better to stay in their dioceses and discuss these with their sheep, who are closer to the matter? USCCB statements serve the purpose of making the bishops feel better. They have all the force of a popgun.

  • Posted by: non-faithfulcatholicschools7869 - Jun. 16, 2011 9:49 PM ET USA

    E-Verify is the single most effective tool to combat illegal immigration.It works.Flooding the market with Illegals made legal will take jobs away from Americans that are legal. The Bishops should know a political ploy when they see it, but they are as much to blame for the illegals as non-enforcement of existing laws.By kowtowing to the political establishment,they lend credence to a very corrupt system. Shame on then for undermining the Immigration Laws.AMNESTY IS NOT AN OPTION!!!

  • Posted by: rpp - Jun. 16, 2011 5:17 PM ET USA

    While I listen very carefully when our bishops speak, I believe this is a matter of prudential judgment; the morality of this is not clear-cut. In my prudential judgment, I disagree with the bishops and believe that anything that makes it easier for people to stay in the US illegally exposes them to more - not less - exploitation by unscrupulous employers. Anything that discourages employers from hiring illegal will lead out of the country and penalize the exploiters. That is more just.

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