There are few topics more likely to start a heated discussion than that of illegal immigration. Most Americans stand firmly on one side or the other, with a few conceding points in either direction. Regardless of where you stand on the issue of illegal immigration, there are certain laws in place which must be followed unless or until they are changed.
One such law was recently upheld by the Supreme Court regarding harsh penalties for employers who knowingly hire individuals known to be “unauthorized aliens”. The Arizona law in question was challenged by civil and business liberties groups according to a recent article published online by the New York Times.
The issue in question is whether or not the state of Arizona can override other laws in regards to the penalties faced by businesses hiring illegal workers. As reported by nytimes.com, “The state argued that the phrase in parentheses- ‘other than through licensing and similar laws’- allowed it to suspend or revoke the business licenses of repeat offenders. Critics called that provision of the state law a ‘business death penalty’.”
The reason this topic stirs up so much emotion is due to the fact that many American workers feel their options for employment, with a fair wage are limited when companies begin to hire illegal immigrants. Whether this is true or not is of course debatable, with the other side claiming the jobs taken by illegal workers are jobs that most American workers would not consider. Regardless of the who or why, the issue of illegal workers and benefits to which they may be entitled will remain a source of controversy in the foreseeable future.
Workers’ compensation benefits may be paid to illegal workers injured on the job, another topic which raises the eyebrows of many American citizens. One thing is certain, as long as there are companies willing to hire individuals regardless of immigration status, the controversy will continue to trigger emotional responses from both sides.