Texas wants undocumented workers, but only for household chores

Debbie Riddle at Quarter Horse Farm

Representative Debbie Riddle who introduced the bill, at Quarter House Farm (via flickr)

A proposed Texas law would fine anyone found to be employing an undocumented immigrant, except people employing them in their homes. Via Yahoo:

A proposed immigration bill in the Texas state House is sure to raise more than a few eyebrows. The bill would make hiring an “unauthorized alien” a crime punishable by up to two years in prison and a $10,000 fine, unless that is, they are hired to do household chores.

Yes, under the House Bill 2012 introduced by a tea party favorite state Rep. Debbie Riddle — who’s been saying for some time that she’d like to see Texas institute an Arizona-style immigration law — hiring an undocumented maid, caretaker, lawnworker or any type of houseworker would be allowed. Why? As Texas state Rep. Aaron Pena, also a Republican, told CNN, without the exemption, “a large segment of the Texas population” would wind up in prison if the bill became law.

(emphasis mine)

In short, Texas Conservatives want to continue to employ undocumented immigrants all the while criminalizing their very existence in the state. Let’s be clear: they have no interest in changing the status of the undocumented immigrants they employ because that would jeopardize their access to cheap and unregulated labor. They want to keep their “hired help” undocumented so they can avoid paying payroll taxes as well as ignore labor rights laws about working conditions and minimum wage requirements.

Just consider for a moment the power an employer has when they can threaten to report an undocumented worker to ICE, especially if the employer would face no penalty for having hired them.

It’s clear what kind of work the supporters of this bill think Latinos in the US are meant for: the cheap, unregulated and domestic kind.

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