President Donald Trump’s Labor Secretary Alex Acosta announced plans Tuesday to “aggressively confront” visa program fraud and abuse.
In a policy shift, Acosta directed the Department of Labor (DOL) to “vigorously” enforce all laws within its jurisdiction over the non-immigrant visa program. He listed a series of specific actions meant to ramp up enforcement of visa program abuse.
Acosta directed DOL’s Wage and Hour Division to use all its tools to enforce labor protections provided by the visa program. He also directed the Employment and Training Administration to propose changes to the Labor Condition Application that may help the government identify fraudulent activity.
The DOL says that it will be actively engaged in criminal referrals on a regular basis. Sources inside the DOL told The Daily Caller News Foundation that the previous administration did not always work actively with the inspector general on pursuing suspected cases of fraud and abuse of the visa program.
“Entities who engage in visa program fraud and abuse are breaking our laws and are harming American workers, negatively affecting Americans’ ability to provide for themselves and their families,” Acosta said in a press release. “We will enforce vigorously those laws, including heightened use of criminal referrals.”
The DOL’s focus on enforcing the nation’s visa programs is a part of the administration’s larger policy of putting America first.
In the first successful legal action of its kind, the DOL obtained a preliminary injunction under the H-2A visa program from the U.S. District Court for Arizona against G Farms for life-threatening housing conditions provided to agricultural workers.
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