Video: Fenway Park Food Vendor Hit with Immigration Fine

Fenway Park food vendor hit with immigration fine

By Kevin Rothstein
FOX Boston, November 8, 2010

BOSTON - Federal immigration authorities fined Red Sox concessions vendor Aramark $50,000 last year for failing to show that many Aramark’s Fenway Park employees were legally authorized to work in the United States.

While details of the violations are confidential, the fine is by far the biggest levied by the federal government last year against a New England company, making it seem likely that illegal immigrants were working at Fenway Park.

Fenway Park isn't, of course, the only place where illegal immigrants may have access to jobs. A FOX Undercover investigation found illegal immigrants still have easy access to work at a time when the federal government's shifting attention away from workers and toward employers is getting mixed reviews.

At Legacy Place mall in Dedham, a FOX Undercover camera was rolling when admitted illegal immigrants confronted a drywall contractor whom they said hasn't paid them in weeks. FOX Undercover reporter Mike Beaudet talked to the contractor.

“Why are you hiring undocumented workers?" Beaudet asked.

“I try and go and get all the information I can from these guys," drywall company owner Jared Stevens said.

“You don't care if they're undocumented?" Beaudet asked.

“I definitely care. But we all have a right to work," he replied.

Stevens claims the men made it onto the worksite through a subcontractor, who Stevens says he paid for the work. Legacy Place said their tenant doing construction, not mall management, who is in charge of hiring contractors.

One worker told Beaudet he is from Honduras and has been in the US for 9 years. Asked if he had papers to be in the US, he said, “No." “Is it tough to find work being undocumented or are there plenty of guys out here who are willing to hire you?" Beaudet asked.

“It's not difficult," replied the worker, who did not give his name.

Jessica Vaughan with the Center for Immigration Studies said it's still far too easy for employers to hire illegal immigrants.

“Essentially what happens is these workers pretend to be legal and the employers pretend to believe them. And that's how everybody is able to keep the system going. “It is easy for them to get away with it because there are no penalties. There's no deterents for them. In most cases, what they're facing is a slap on the wrist or a warning," she said.
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