South Bay News

Federal agents launch immigration audit of Mi Pueblo supermarkets

Friday, October 05, 2012
Mi Pueblo supermarket

Days before a planned protest, officials at the Mi Pueblo supermarket chain are trying to calm fears of an immigration audit.

The San Jose-based grocer operates 21 stores. The Department of Homeland Security launched an audit of Mi Pueblo in August over reports of illegal immigrant workers.

Company officials say it sees the audit as part of the cost of doing business. "So the government may raise concerns about some people. The company hopes that they don't lose one person. If they lose one person from an I-9 audit somewhere down the road, they want every one of them to come back if there can be legal status obtained and immigration reform in this country," a spokesperson said. Since the audit began, the company has switched to the E-Verify system -- for new hires only.

A union trying to organize workers at Mi Pueblo will try and organize a boycott beginning Monday because the company refuses to sign a labor agreement.

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