SACRAMENTO, CA — Today, Assembly Bill (AB) 622 authored by Assemblymember Roger Hernández (D – West Covina) was signed by Governor Brown.
AB 622 limits the misuse of E-Verify by prohibiting employers from using E-Verify in a manner not prescribed by federal law. In addition, AB 622 creates financial and civil penalties for employers who break the law, clarifies the "tentative non-confirmation" notification process for businesses and workers, and creates grounds to prohibit employers from verifying existing workers.
"AB 622 is an overdue bill to protect immigrants in California," Hernández stated. "Under federal regulations, E-Verify should not be used on job applicants and existing workers yet there are virtually no accountability measures or penalties in place for unscrupulous employers who abuse E-Verify," added Hernández.
Each year, thousands of people may be wrongly kept from working or even fired because of this federal program. E-Verify is used to check whether a new employee is authorized to work in the U.S. under existing immigration policies. E-Verify either confirms a worker's authorization or issues a "tentative non-confirmation" (TNC) notice. A TNC indicates the federal government databases cannot immediately confirm that a worker is employment-eligible. TNC rates are high for employment-authorized immigrant workers, and as a result, many face adverse actions by companies.
"You may not have heard of E-Verify, but no matter where you were born or what your immigration status is, this fundamentally flawed program could put your job at risk. Amid a growing movement to combat economic inequity, AB 622 offers a critical tool to prevent abuses against workers who stand up for their rights. We're proud to see California expand its pro-immigrant blueprint with this common-sense law," stated Gabriela Villareal, Policy Manager at the California Immigrant Policy Center.
Hernández proudly serves the cities of Azusa, Baldwin Park, Bradbury, City of Industry, Covina, El Monte, Glendora, Irwindale, Monrovia, West Covina and the unincorporated communities of: Bassett, Charter Oak, East Arcadia, Ramona, Royal Oaks and Valinda. Hernández also serves as Chair of the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee.