A group of undocumented workers, who were previously employed by Trump Golf Resorts, have arrived in Washington this week asking for officials to launch an investigation into Trump’s hiring practices and for Congress to offer them protection from the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
One of the first to speak out was Victorina Morales, an undocumented immigrant worker who was employed as a cleaner at one of Trump’s Golf Clubs. She spoke to The New York Times about what it was like to work for President Trump in the current climate. She said she was “not the only worker at the club who was in the country illegally.” and though she has no evidence that Trump himself knew, she was SURE that supervisors definitely knew and took steps to evade any trouble from immigration.
The group, including Ms. Morales and employees Margarita Cruz, Sandra Diaz, and Gabriel Sedano, met with New Jersey Democratic Sens. Cory Booker and Robert Menendez.
“[The workers] really speak volumes about the hypocrisy of the president who rails against immigrants but uses their labor and does so in a way, and an in an environment, as I understand it, that was hostile to them and threatening to them.”-Sen. Robert Menendez, after speaking to undocumented immigrant Trump employees
Morales, who entered the country illegally 20 years ago, said she had absolutely no trouble getting hired by the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, saying her managers even helped her obtain fake papers. Other former employees tell very similar stories.
A spokeswoman for the Trump Organization issued this previously released statement from Trump’s son Eric Trump:
“We have tens of thousands of employees across our properties and have very strict hiring practices. If any employee submitted false documentation in an attempt to circumvent the law, they will be terminated immediately. We take this issue very seriously. This is one of the reasons my father is fighting so hard for immigration reform. The system is broken.”-Eric Trump
Mr. Sedano, who worked at Trump’s club in Westchester says that he began working there in 2005 and became increasingly uncomfortable as the rhetoric surrounding the 2016 presidential election hyped up. He said he feared things would escalate negatively at his job, perhaps even causing his employment status to change. But nothing happened. Until this past week. On January 18, a dozen employees from the Westchester club (including Sedano) were brought in and fired because of their work status. Sedano said, “It seemed unjust that they just call you and they fire you when they knew we were good workers.”.
Attorney David Leopold, a partner with Ulmer & Berne who chairs the firm’s immigration practice joined in on the meeting and said, “If they get removed from the US, that is obstruction of justice because these are witnesses and that’s what we’re talking about on Capitol Hill and they’ve been very responsive,” adding, “This isn’t just limited to Bedminster or Westchester.”
All this comes on the heels of the longest federal shutdown in government history which ultimately occurred because of Trump’s month long temper tantrum over the $5.7 billion dollar funding he wanted signed into the budget for a “border wall”.