A concrete contractor in Yuma has been recognized by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as the first employer in Yuma County to take part in a program aimed at preventing the hiring of workers who don’t legally reside in the United States.
The IMAGE program provided education and training to Evans Custom Concrete in proper hiring procedures and use of employee screening tools such as E-Verify to prevent applicants from using fraudulent documents to gain employment.
Evans is among 21 companies throughout the state who have been certified as partners with Immigration and Customs Enforcement in IMAGE — the acronym for ICE Mutual Agreement Between Government and Employers. Evans is also the first in the county to join the program, ICE officials said.
"We are honored to be the first company in Yuma County to be part of the IMAGE program," said Les Evans, owner of the business. "Good hiring practices are an important factor in keeping compliant with state and federal regulations. I believe this benefits not only our company but our employees as well."
ICE launched the IMAGE program in 2006 as a way to stop unauthorized immigrants from using false documents to gain employment and apply for benefits and from stealing the identities of legal workers.
As part of the program, employers certified as IMAGE partners undergo audits of their I-9 forms.
"I am pleased to welcome Evans Custom Concrete as Yuma’s first IMAGE partner," said Scott Brown, deputy special agent in charge of ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations. HSI is the program within the agency that works with employers to strengthen hiring practices against employment of unauthorized workers.
"HSI recognizes the highest level of workforce integrity can only be achieved through close coordination with industry partners."
Evans Custom Concrete, founded in 2006, is a commercial and residential concrete contractor with 30 employees.