WASHINGTON (MEDIA GENERAL) – Business tycoon Donald Trump has stolen the national spotlight after announcing his candidacy for the 2016 presidential election while making disparaging comments on Latinos and illegal immigrants.
Trump said illegal immigrants, entering the United States through Mexico, “are bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”
According to a report from the Washington Post, several undocumented immigrants are working on the construction site of Trump’s new $200 million hotel in Washington D.C.
According to the Post, the majority of the workers on the site of the future Trump International Hotel in D.C. are Hispanic, many of whom entered the country illegally.
According to stonemason Ivan Arellano, who is from Mexico and now is legally in America through marriage, Trump’s comments have dominated discussion around the construction site.
“The majority of us are Hispanics, many who came illegally. And we’re all here working very hard to build a better life for our families,” Arellano told the Washington Post.
Following Trump’s comments, many are concerned, legal citizens or not, that they will be fired.
“He might come one day and pretty much tell us to get the heck out of here,” said Daniel Gonzalez, a sheet metal worker who was granted asylum in the U.S. from war-torn El Salvador.
Ramon Alvarez, a window worker from El Salvador, posited a hypothetical question to Mr. Trump.
Asked Alvarez: “Do you think that when we’re hanging out there from the eighth floor, that we’re raping or selling drugs? We’re risking our lives and our health. A lot of the chemicals we deal with are toxic.”
A spokesperson for the Trump Organization issued a statement that said the company and its contractors follow all U.S. immigration laws in its hiring process. The statement also said it is the obligation of the lead contractor of the hotel to verify employee’s legal status.