That’s what we heard yesterday from Hilda Solis, Secretary of Labor at the beginning of Labor Rights Week in announcing a new Administration policy for workers.
From CNS News (Hat tip: Brad):
Solis said, “No matter how you got here or how long you plan to stay, you have certain rights. You have the right to be safe and in a healthy workplace and the right to a legal wage. We gather here today to strengthen our shared commitment to protect the labor rights of migrant workers in the United States.
We are all Tea Partiers now! Seems they are concerned about uncollected tax money?
….an increase in more underground activity, economic activity that goes untapped, those monies that are being paid to workers.”
“In some cases taxes aren’t being appropriately paid, those taxes should go into our [U.S.] Treasury, and if everyone is brought out of the shadow in that manner, then we’ll have more assistance to protect people, we’ll have better competitive businesses,” she said. “It’s not fair for businesses who come into this country or are working in this country now and abuse workers. So we’re trying to rectify that and with that we hope that there will be more awareness and there’ll be better, how can I say, policies and documentations that can counter all that negativity that we’re seeing occurring when we’re seeing a downturn in our economy. That’s when most vulnerable are abused when there’s a downturn in the economy.”
If it’s taxes they are worried about, there is an easier way—companies should hire only those here legally in the first place. Oh yeh, we have a legal tool called E-verify to do just that. Come to think of it, don’t we now have a bit of a conflict between government programs (so what else is new!)?
In her address at the signing ceremony, Solis asserted that all migrant workers have a “right to a legal wage”–even though the Labor Department itself states that under U.S. law, the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), “employers may hire only persons who may legally work in the United States (i.e., citizens and nationals of the U.S.) and aliens authorized to work in the U.S.”
Oh, but what’s a little conflict between laws when an election year is approaching and the Hispanics are raging.
Present at the ceremony with Solis were a couple of union big wigs:
Two labor union leaders were invited to speak at today’s ceremony, Eliseo Medina from the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union’s Joseph Hansen.
Marylanders remember that name “Eliseo Medina!”
“I’ve started to lobby Gustavo,” Medina says. “Are you just a CASA of Maryland? How about a CASA of the East? A CASA of the United States?”
God help us.