News Bytes

Posted on: January 24th, 2018
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someoneShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare on RedditShare on LinkedInPrint this page

Washington State Files Lawsuit Against Motel 6 for Disclosing Guest Data to Immigration Agents

On January 4, 2018, Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed a lawsuit against Motel 6 on allegations that the motel chain unlawfully provided immigration officials with guest lists. According to the suit, the lists were given to the immigration agents because the guests had “Latino sounding” names. Attorney General Ferguson alleged in his suit that six different locations in the state of Washington disclosed the names, birthdates, license plates, and other personal information of over 9,100 guests to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents between June 2015 and May 2017, which resulted in the detention of at least six people.

Lending credence to Ferguson’s allegations, the Attorney General referenced a similar occurrence involving Motel 6 in Arizona, in which 20 individuals were arrested at the motel chain’s locations between February and August. Furthermore, contrary to company policy of, “safeguarding the privacy of personal information that we gather,” new employees at Motel 6 were trained to fully cooperate with immigration enforcement agents.

G6 Hospitality, the management company of Motel 6, stated that its more than 1,400 locations in the United States and Canada have been instructed to cease and desist all such voluntary dissemination of guest’s personal information, and in a statement said it plans to “fully cooperate with the Office of the State Attorney General.”

For more information, view the full article.
***

Customs and Border Protection Expands I-94 Website Features

United States Customs and Broder Protection (CBP) created two new resources for aiding Visa Waiver Program (VWP) travelers check the status of their stay in the country and make sure they remain in compliance with the terms of their stay. On the I-9 website, a feature was added under the “View Compliance” tab, which allows individuals to reference the status of their admission to the United States. By utilizing this tool, individuals will be provided with the up-to-date number of days remaining on their lawful admission or with the number of days they have remained past their admitted until date. CBP will also send alert emails 10 days in advance of the expiration of VWP travelers’ lawful admission period, in an effort to prevent travelers from overstaying and maintain awareness of the travelers’ terms of stay. The alert email will be sent from Staycompliance-donotreply@cbp.dhs.gov, if VWP travelers receive an alert email from a different email address, it may be a fraudulent email or phishing scam.

For more information, view the CBP news release.
***

ICE Agents Target Almost 100 7-Eleven Stores in Immigration Investigation

On January 10, 2018, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducted an extensive investigation of almost 100 7-Eleven convenience stores searching for illegal workers and their employers across 17 states and the District of Columbia. In the end, 21 people were arrested by the agency under suspicion of being illegally present in the country, after what amounted to the largest anti-immigration operation against a single employer since the Trump administration came into office. Acting ICE director Thomas D Howman stated that the investigation was meant to serve as a warning to all businesses across the country which give employment to illegal workers, “ICE will enforce the law, and if you are found to be breaking the law, you will be held accountable.”

This investigation came in the midst of an overall effort by ICE to increase arrests, as the agency has recorded a 43 percent increase in arrests between late January and August 2017 when compared with the same time span in 2016, though overall deportations for 2017 were lower than 2016. The agency has stated that it is consciously targeting both the businesses that employ workers illegally and the illegally employed workers, asserting that decreasing the number of employers will strangle the demand for illegal workers entering the country. Critics say such workplace raids do not significantly deter immigrants and furthermore do nothing to address the large number of undocumented individuals who are actively contributing to the American economy and working to support their families.

For more information, view the full article.

Back | Index | Next

Disclaimer: This newsletter is provided as a public service and not intended to establish an attorney client relationship. Any reliance on information contained herein is taken at your own risk.