Migrant Labour in the United States: Working Beneath the Floor for Free Labour?
Migrant Labour in the United States: Working Beneath the Floor for Free Labour argues that the treatment of migrant labor in the United States violates prohibitions against slavery and involuntary servitude found in the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Although undocumented workers are theoretically covered under federal labor and employment laws, there are two problems that eviscerate their protection under these laws. First, the Supreme Court's 2002 Hoffman decision denied undocumented workers important remedies under the law, such as back pay and reinstatement if terminated unfairly. Second, if they participate in union activity or complain about working conditions, undocumented workers fear that employers will report their status to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement thus resulting in deportation. Even guest workers who are in the country legally know that employers will retaliate if they speak out. Moreover, agricultural and domestic workers ae specifically excluded from protection under the National Labor Relations Act. "By creating a group of legally exploitable workers who, in practice, tend to be racial minorities," the United States is "running afoul of the amendment's purpose." (Abstract courtesy Nicholas Montalto, PhD.)
Ontiveros, M. L. (2014). Migrant Labour in the United States: Working Beneath the Floor for Free Labour?. University of San Francisco School of Law. San Francisco: CA. Available at: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2457257