Jobs Looking for People, People Looking for Their Rights: Seeking Relief for Exploited Immigrant Workers in North Dakota

19 Pages Posted: 27 Feb 2016

Date Written: February 25, 2016

Abstract

The recent oil boom drew a number of workers to North Dakota, and the state has seen demographic changes as a result, including a growing foreign-born population. Immigrant workers have been a key part of the state’s economic development, but temporary or undocumented immigrants are also particularly vulnerable to exploitation by employers. This article will explore immigration remedies for workplace abuse and the barriers that workers face when seeking visa certification, as well as the legal implications of certification denial policies. Although T and U visa certifications are not yet common practice in North Dakota, this article argues that these policies are worth consideration, especially given the grounds upon which denials might be challenged. Certification practices across the country have demonstrated that these programs benefit relationships between law enforcement and immigrant communities, protect fundamental workplace rights, and ultimately support better conditions for all workers.

Keywords: labor rights, immigration, trafficking, T visa, U visa

Suggested Citation

Balgamwalla, Sabrina, Jobs Looking for People, People Looking for Their Rights: Seeking Relief for Exploited Immigrant Workers in North Dakota (February 25, 2016). North Dakota Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2738006 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2738006

Sabrina Balgamwalla (Contact Author)

Wayne State University Law School ( email )

471 Palmer
Detroit, MI 48202
United States

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