The Center's Negative Christmas List

By David North on December 22, 2010
He's making a list and checking it twice,
He's going to find out who's naughty and nice . . .
-- From "Santa Claus is coming to town"

As a public service, the Center for Immigration Studies is providing you with a negative shopping list, so that you will not patronize any of the enumerated firms, ones with really grim records of abusing foreign worker programs.

I say that because while many firms have their labor certification requests denied, only a handful have handled the program so badly that they are formally debarred from it. The current lists, on two different locations on the Department of Labor's website (here and here) contain only 42 citations, a random sampling of which is shown below.

The list shows the firm's line of business, its name, its location, and some notes about its activities. In some cases the nature of the business was drawn from the name of the firm, in other cases from Google listings.

BusinessName and addressComments
Baking companyGoldilocks Corp., DBA 4MY2C, Inc., Santa Fe Springs, Calif.Debarred from the H-1B program
CowsFullmer Cattle Co., Muleshoe, TexasFormer user of the H-2A farm worker program
DentistryMahadeep Virk DMD, Puyallup, Wash.Debarred for two years from H-1B program
Ethnic newspaperAsian Journal, Los Angeles, Calif.Written for Filipino-Americans; H-1B problems
Health careJuno Healthcare Staffing, Elmhurst, N.Y.One of many such firms with troubled H-1B records
Law firmMertz, Bitelman, New York, N.Y.H-1B problems
Probably loggingPelletier & Pelletier, Fort Kent, MaineIn trouble with the H-2A program which brings loggers in from Canada
SoftwareK-Soft Information Technologies, Inc., Jacksonville, Fla.Many, perhaps most, of the debarred H-1B companies are in software
Tennessee Walking HorsesFulcher's Red Fox Stables, LLC, Oriental, N.C. Formerly debarred from the H-2A farm worker program

The specifics of the Asian Journal's transgressions were covered in an earlier blog of mine. Some firms are debarred for one year, some for two, some for three.

The listing is significant for several reasons. First, the Labor Department is to be commended for having such a list, I do not believe that USCIS, for instance, has a comparable system.

Secondly, it is probably too short a list; my strong suspicion is that given a little more administrative enthusiasm for enforcement, many other firms (including some more prominent ones) might be added to such a list.

Thirdly, it is a list that is all too obscure. I have been in the immigration business off and on for 40 years and have never heard of it until I saw a tiny reference to it in the immigration bar's trade paper, Interpreter Releases, in the November 15 issue.

As the Government Accountability Office pointed out in a recent report on abuses in the H-2B program (for low-skilled, non-agricultural workers), all too often government benefits were handed out to employers who had seriously abused that program, even those convicted of criminal behavior. If an employer is in trouble for abusing a foreign worker program, that fact should be made known not only to local newspapers, but to all government agencies working with the firm.

In short, there should be a much wider distribution of these negative lists.