Costco, the nation’s multibillion dollar warehouse retailer with over 400 stores and 110,000 employees, has been using E-Verify, since March 2010. E-Verify is the free government online system that confirms the immigration status of new hires. Costco places the official E-Verify poster inside all its stores adjacent to the Member Services counter and also includes it on its website employment page to discourage illegal aliens from applying. According to a story published in the San Diego Examiner, Costco spokeswoman Shawna Wilson at its Seattle corporate headquarters confirmed that E-verify has been operating smoothly for 14 months. Said Wilson: “Costco is proud to be a major corporate participant in the E-Verify program and help put American workers back to work.” Ms. Wilson added Costco is also considering signing up for the free government “IMAGE” Program – ICE Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers – which audits all employees to ensure that they are in full compliance with federal laws. IMAGE provides businesses with management training tools to help management implement sound hiring practices—that is, employing American citizens or legal immigrants and not aliens. More than 250,000 businesses use E-Verify at about 850,000 worksites, said Alejandro Mayorkas, director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. He added that about 1,200 new employers sign up for the program each week. The E-Verify recently introduced a self-check version that is available in Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Mississippi, Virginia and D.C. It will expand to include about 16 states in fiscal 2012, which begins October 1. [E-Verify Self Check System Begins, by Erin Kelly and Jahna Berry, Arizona Republic, March 21, 2001] With mandatory E-Verify poised to pass Congress, Costco is already one step ahead of its competition. Sam’s Club, owned by Wal-Mart and the second largest national wholesale chain, does not use E-Verify. Thank Costco for supporting American workers at its comments page here. Urge Wal-Mart to adopt E-Verify here.