Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Illegal Immigrants Sue Labor Contractor Global Horizons

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) A federal judge has granted class-action status to a lawsuit filed by Yakima Valley farm workers who contend a Los Angeles-based labor contractor illegally and intentionally displaced them with workers from Thailand.

The local workers, who are represented by Columbia Legal Services, allege the company violated state and federal law by intentionally displacing them with the foreign workers.

Here is where I'll point out that the 600 "local" workers who were displaced were determined by Global Horizons to be illegal aliens. I'm not joking.

So, in short, what we have here is a government that tells farmers if they hire illegal aliens it's a crime. But, on the other hand, if they fire illegal aliens it's a class-action lawsuit.

Talk about a rock and a hard place. Here's more from the story:

Attorneys for Global Horizons...argued that 264 members of the class should not be counted because they presented Social Security numbers that didn't match federal records.

The judge was said to have ruled that providing a false social security number does not prove anything about your immigration status, and thus it was improper to fire the workers by claiming they are illegal (nevermind that they lied, stole and lied again when they put those numbers on their employment applications). Furthermore, and perhaps most importantly, he found that the immigration status of the workers is irrelevant at this point in the case.

Effectively, Judge Leavitt is saying that employers cannot use the immigration status of an individual when determining whether or not to hire that particular person.

The other 300 workers (the ones that didn't supply fake social security numbers) never showed up to work, Global Horizons alleges. This created the condition for the company to
import workers from Thailand under the federal H-2A guest-worker program.

What they have on their hands now, after complying with federal law that prohibits them from hiring illegal aliens is a class-action lawsuit that attacks them for firing illegal aliens.

Am I taking crazy pills here, or is this just plain ridiculous?


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