Alabama judge rules illegal immigrant due workers comp for life Tuscaloosa News 22 November 2005 By JAY REEVES Associated Press
”Omar Santos-Cruz came to the United States illegally from Mexico and went to work building houses in one of Alabama`s fanciest neighborhoods before he was seriously injured in a fall last year at age 17.”
“A court has now ruled that Santos-Cruz is due workers compensation benefits and medical care for life despite being in the country illegally - a possible legal precedent and certainly a sign of things to come for builders who have come to rely on immigrant laborers in a booming housing market.”
Halfway through reading this report I found myself thinking about how life -and justice have taken a Twilight Zone - like turn for the bizarre…again.
Then I finished the piece and grinned at the possibilities.
Alabama has only about ten percent of the illegal alien population as does my home state of Georgia.
Here, homes are popping up like mushrooms after a rain and a very large part of the workers are illegal aliens…from Mexico.
While I smell a MALDEF connection in this lawsuit, I find the idea of the contractor, Henry W. Lambert Construction Inc. being held responsible for the medical bills of this illegal colonist and his income - for life – to be an interesting turn of events.
As a matter of fact, it made my day.
Even if the Home Builders Association of Alabama self-insurance fund is paying the expense’s.
With ten times as many illegals here, how long before a cottage industry of suing any… and hopefully all…criminal employers here in Georgia? For that matter, is that the sound of lawyers on conference calls all over George W. Bush’s New America that I hear?
Frederick L. Fohrell, an attorney for the home builders, said the case highlighted the "tremendous challenges" that lie ahead as the law catches up with the wave of immigrants who have moved into Alabama.
Maybe this guy hasn’t heard…Bush is trying to negate the law. Again.
Below, I submit the understatement of the week…
"I expect the question may come up again," said Fohrell, of Huntsville.
Santos-Cruz, who doesn`t speak English, fell through a window while working with his brother on a Lambert job site on March 10, 2004, court files show. He suffered a severe head injury that left him comatose for a time, and he remains partially paralyzed.
Even with the new, and one must assume un-expected, expense of actually having to pay benefits to an illegal alien, a spokesman for the Home Builders Association, W. Russell Davis, doesn’t miss the chance to tell us that it is still more profitable for his industry to continue to hire illegal Third World labor than those bothersome and high-priced Americans who would expect a living wage.
“Hispanics provide essential skills to Alabama`s home building industry, which couldn`t keep up with demand without them.”
"We`re lucky to have them here. If we didn`t, with the volume of homes that are being built, we couldn`t keep up with the demand because we wouldn`t have enough people for the skilled trades."
Wouldn’t legislation that would make those who hire illegal labor personally responsible for all medical expenses of those who make it past our un-secured borders would be fun to watch these guys fight?