I was pleased to see your newspaper cover the work of the Office of Special Counsel for Unfair Immigration Related Employment Practices ("Provision of Amnesty Law Trips Up Some Employers," Part I, May 5). The task of getting the word out about the new civil rights protections in the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 is an important challenge at the Office of Special Counsel. We appreciate press coverage because that's one of the best ways of educating the public as to their rights.
Because we assign such importance to educating the public, two potentially misleading points in the article concerned me. First, the article mentioned that our office has filed complaints "in just five of the 119 cases investigated." Some readers might infer from this that we've dismissed the other 114. In fact, of the remaining 114 charges, 29 are incomplete (by law, we must receive certain minimal information before we can even initiate an investigation), 50 are under investigation (we have 120 days to investigate a charge before deciding whether to file a complaint), and five have been settled after the injured parties were rehired or offered employment with back pay.
Incidentally, the article didn't mention that we've filed an additional three complaints based on our independent investigations. So the total number of complaints filed by our new office is eight, rather than five.