The NY Times on January 5, 2011: By Ian Lovett “Patch of California Cracks Down on Illegal Immigrants”
Why is this post relevant on a bankrutpcy attorney blog? Bankruptcy gives a chance to reflect on the past and on the future. No longer are creditors calling. There is time to think. There are no garnishments. One can breath again.
Here is what I ask people to think about: In every economic crisis, there is a human tendency to blame and seek out a group to single out as if not causing, at least contributing to the misery of the moment.
Undocumented central and south Americans have not caused the recession. Nor are they contributing to the prolongation of the recession, my my estimation.
Nevertheless, 50 miles east of Los Angeles, Murrieta, California, became the fifth Inland Empire city to require all businesses to check the legal status of new employees with E-Verify, an online federal government system designed to confirm employment eligibility. Business in Murrieta that do not comply, can lose their licenses.
Temecula, California also recently enacted similar legislation into its city code.
Unemployment is around 15% in Murrieta, and anglo locals complain that immigrants are inundating industries like fast food and construction, leaving citizens unable to find jobs. The county in which Temecula and Murrieta are located, Riverside County, have latino populations of about 40%.
In California, Latinos make up about 37% of the population.
The Republican state assemblyman who represents that portion of Riverside where Temecula and Murrieta are located does not support the mandatory use of all employers by E-Verify, noting that the loss of laborers could be an unwelcome economic shock: “A lot of industries here have run on illegal immigration…work is here and available, and that’s a magnet for illegal immigrants. But I would like to see a more comprehensive approach, which also involves securing our border, and dealing with people who are already here whether we like it or not.”
Riverside is also a large agricultural area. Many immigrants work in the backbreaking harvesting of food and processing of food industries.
During the “boom” years in the middle of the 2000’s the immigration complaints were not as loud – when we needed them to build and remodel our overpriced houses to try to flip.
If bankrutpcy is giving you a fresh start to think a bit…please try to think a bit broadly and equitably, is all that I ask.