Skip to main content
Press Release

Justice Department Secures Agreement with Security Services Company to Resolve Immigration-Related Discrimination Claims

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

The Justice Department announced today that it has secured a settlement agreement with Securitas Security Services USA Inc. (Securitas), a protective services company with locations throughout the United States. The agreement resolves the department’s determination that certain Securitas locations violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) by discriminating against non-U.S. citizens when checking their permission to work in the United States.

“Employers cannot restrict the types of documents workers can use to prove their permission to work,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “The department continues to ensure that all workers, regardless of citizenship, immigration status or national origin, are allowed to present valid documents of their choice to prove their permission to work.”

The Civil Rights Division’s Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER) determined that from at least Feb. 3, 2020, to Dec. 20, 2021, Securitas’ East Bay area locations, located in the cities of Concord and Fremont, California, routinely required lawful permanent residents to present a specific immigration document when checking their permission to work. In addition, the department determined that, between Feb. 3, 2020, and June 23, 2022, the company made similar document demands of other non-citizens with permission to work.

Under the terms of the settlement, Securitas will pay $100,000 in civil penalties to the United States and establish a backpay fund of $75,000 to compensate victims of the company’s discriminatory practices, including those who were fired or lost work because they could not comply with the company’s discriminatory document demands. Securitas has also agreed to train its personnel on the INA’s requirements, review its employment policies and be subject to monitoring by the department.

Federal law allows all workers to choose which valid, legally acceptable documentation to present to prove their identity and permission to work, regardless of citizenship status, immigration status or national origin. The INA’s anti-discrimination provision prohibits employers from asking for specific or unnecessary documents because of a worker’s citizenship status, immigration status or national origin. Indeed, many non-U.S. citizens, including lawful permanent residents, are eligible for several of the same types of documents to prove their permission to work as U.S. citizens are (for example, a state ID or driver’s license and an unrestricted Social Security card). Employers must allow workers to present whatever acceptable documentation the workers choose and cannot reject valid documentation that reasonably appears to be genuine.

IER is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provision of the INA. The statute prohibits discrimination based on citizenship status and national origin in hiring, firing or recruitment or referral for a fee, unfair documentary practices and retaliation and intimidation

Find more information on how employers can avoid discrimination when verifying someone’s permission to work on IER’s website. Learn more about IER’s work and how to get assistance through this brief video. Applicants or employees who believe they were discriminated against based on their citizenship, immigration status or national origin in hiring, firing, recruitment or during the employment eligibility verification process (Form I-9 and E-Verify), or subjected to retaliation, may file a charge. The public can also call IER’s worker hotline at 1-800-255-7688 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for hearing impaired); call IER’s employer hotline at 1-800-255-8155 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for hearing impaired); email; sign up for a live webinar or watch an on-demand presentation or visit IER’s English and Spanish websites. Subscribe for email updates from IER.

Updated April 2, 2024

Civil Rights
Press Release Number: 24-384