March 18, 2010
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano today joined U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director Alejandro Mayorkas to announce a trio of initiatives to strengthen the efficiency and accuracy of the E-Verify system. These initiatives include a new agreement with the Department of Justice that will streamline the adjudication process in cases of E-Verify misuse and discrimination; an informational telephone hotline for employees to provide a more timely, effective and seamless customer experience for workers seeking E-Verify information; and new training videos focusing on E-Verify procedures and policies, employee rights and employer responsibilities in English and Spanish.
Additionally, DHS publicly defended E-Verify on its blog - http://www.dhs.gov/journal/theblog/2010/03/e-verify-truth-in-numbers.html asserting that the system's accuracy and efficiency continues to improve despite news to the contrary. Lauren Kielsmeier, the Acting Deputy Director and Chief of Staff for USCIS, points out that just 3.3% of the overall population studied by Westat (the independent evaluation firm) was incorrectly found to be work authorized. She also writes that USCIS is planning additional enhancements to E-Verify such as adding U.S. passports to the photo tool and working with states to access state driver's license data. USCIS is also planning to launch a pilot program to explore the use of biometric or biographic-based verification.
Latest Stats: more than 192,000 participating employers at more than 705,000 worksites nationwide currently use E-Verify to electronically verify their workers' employment eligibility. Since Oct. 1, 2009, E-Verify has processed more than six million queries.