T’was the First Day of Work*
* Adapted from the poem “T’was the Night Before Christmas aka A Visit From St. Nicholas” by Clement Clarke Moore (1779-1863).
T’was the First Day of Work
A Poem by Ann Cun
T’was the first day of work for three new employees
A load full of documents, to sort through with ease.
The employer will soon learn that the one-page I-9
Is much more than a form, to review and just sign.
Let’s start with the first hire, let’s call him John Doze
Better known as Jack, the one everyone knows.
Yes, be that as it may, such nicknames aside
Just the legal name please, says the handbook, the guide.
The M-274 guide, that employers do trust
And also I-9 central, take a look, one must.
Oh worrisome I-9 rules, one often begs.
As for the second new hire, Ms. Jane Smith
Must she provide a social, a truth or myth?
For E-Verify employers, a must indeed
But others may skip it, there may be no need.
Be allayed, no reason to worry, sulk or hiss
If using these tools, you ought not be remiss.
Though assortment of tools alone does not match
These wise words from counsel, as such can dispatch.
“Big landmines are I-9s to the heedless herd
HR beware! Fine amounts in the absurd!
No white-out, no back-dates, and no aimless shredding
Merely to “pass” an I-9 audit you’re dreading.
“When I-9 purge dates are finally mature
Destroy you may, but not any time before.
Provide your staff with expert I-9 training
In spite of your schedule or any complaining.
“When the indecisive hire, and face you shall
Presents many docs with no rhyme or rationale,
Be careful, as docs from any of the List
A or B and C, they must choose, you should insist.
Now back to the hires, the third in this posse
With a foreign look and style, such is Ms. Rossi.
Her demeanor unfamiliar, her accent thick
Having just crossed the ocean, the great Atlantic.
Ah ha! Foreign she is, confirmed by your hunch
But that doesn’t mean much, not a bit or a bunch.
Avoid inclinations to request a peek
Of specific docs, as tricky is such technique.
Instead, it’s safer to enact a policy
To be keenly followed by any employee.
So no new hires are uniquely singled out
That prejudices or suspicions can often bring about.
Even greater importance for HR to heed
Is the use of electronic I-9s indeed.
“O’ Captain My Captain” you are of this ship
Steered not by engineers, the OSC will quip.
Compliance is yours, a burden borne alone
If ICE comes knocking, blame cannot be thrown.
So please pick with care, your vendor and partner
Due diligence is key, as much as you can garner.
As the first day of work comes near for these three
Consider that compliance is not static or free.
A beast that devours attention and time
Feed it regularly to reach a state so sublime.
* * *
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