SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — One of the largest independently owned supermarket chains in New England on Wednesday became the latest business to partner in a nationwide program by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to ensure a legal and more secure work force.
IMAGE is a voluntary program that allows private industry to partner with ICE to reduce unauthorized employment and the use of fraudulent identity documents.
Big Y is a family owned and oriented retail food company serving people's at-home food needs.
As an IMAGE certified member, Big Y is recognized as an exceptional employer and a role model in the business community. IMAGE certified employers are committed to hiring only authorized workers whose identity and eligibility to work in the United States is documented. Partnering with IMAGE provides Big Y with the tools to ensure employees are who they represent themselves to be.
To qualify for IMAGE certification, a business must complete the following requirements:
- Enroll in employment eligibility verification programs, such as E-Verify and the Social Security Number Verification Service;
- Establish a written hiring and employment eligibility verification policy that includes internal Form I-9 audits annually;
- Undergo a Form I-9 employment eligibility verification audit conducted by ICE.
Big Y is the first supermarket chain in New England to partner with the IMAGE distinction.
“Big Y is pleased to be part of the IMAGE program. The partnership with IMAGE enables us to achieve the highest level of available employment integrity and promotes a healthy, safe and productive work environment,” said Director of Talent Management and Employee Relations, Laurie Hebert.
Big Y was founded in 1936 and has approximately 67 retail locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut with more than 10,000 employees.
There are currently nine other businesses in Massachusetts that have partnered with ICE under this program