Recently, federal agents raided dozens of 7-Eleven convenience stores in one of the Trump administration’s largest immigration enforcement operations against employers so far. The sweeps included 98 stores in 17 states across the country, in an effort to signal to employers that the administration is intensifying its efforts against businesses that violate U.S. immigration laws U.S. This raid came on the heels of a government raid of a Chicago bakery that discovered roughly 800 undocumented workers. The government aims to see a 400% increase in work site operations. Immigration and Customs Enforcement hopes to send a strong message to employers and promises more intense scrutiny of businesses that knowingly violate federal laws when it comes to their employees’ eligibility to work.
The government has said in the past that it intends to both prosecute employers who knowingly hire unauthorized immigrants and detain and remove these immigrants. When agents raid workplaces, they often demand to see employees’ immigration documents. The government regularly conducts I-9 audits to verify whether HR properly completed I-9 employment verification upon hire. Therefore, it is as important as ever for employers to ensure that their workforce has proper immigration status and that their I-9 records are accurate. While raids like these are often meant to spark fear and deter employers from hiring unauthorized immigrants, employers of legally authorized immigrants should also be prepared with the appropriate documentation. For guidance on what employers and employees should do before and during an immigration raid, see our tips. We update this page periodically.