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Employment Rights and Resources for Refugees and Asylees

Information Memorandum (IM-17-01)

Published: April 21, 2017

Date: April 21, 2017

To: State Refugee Coordinators
      State Refugee Health Coordinators
      Voluntary Agencies

From: E. Scott Lloyd
           Director, Office of Refugee Resettlement

In January 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Immigrant and Employee Rights (IER) Section, issued a document titled, “Employment Rights and Resources for Refugees and Asylees.” The document discusses several rights that asylees and refugees have in the workplace and how to contact relevant federal agencies if they believe their rights are being violated. The resource is available here.

The IER enforces the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1324b. This federal law prohibits: (1) citizenship status discrimination in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee; (2) national origin discrimination in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee, (3) documentary practices during the employment eligibility verification, Form I-9 and E-Verify, and (4) retaliation or intimidation.

Prior to January 2017, IER was known as the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices. The mission of IER remains the same as it was when it was called the Office of Special Counsel.

Additional information about IER can be found on their website, and IER’s Refugee/Asylee Flyer.

Last Reviewed: February 6, 2019