Victorina Morales made her way to the United States from rural Guatemala nearly a decade ago, crossing illegally into California on foot in 1999.
By 2013, Morales found herself employed by none other than Donald Trump, working as a housekeeper at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J.
In order to get that job, Morales told the New York Times she presented Trump’s business with phony documents.
Mr. Trump has made border security and the fight to protect jobs for Americans a cornerstone of his presidency, from the border wall he has pledged to build to the workplace raids and payroll audits that his administration has carried out.
During the presidential campaign, when the Trump International Hotel opened for business in Washington, Mr. Trump boasted that he had used an electronic verification system, E-Verify, to ensure that only those legally entitled to work were hired. …
But throughout his campaign and his administration, Ms. Morales, 45, has been reporting for work at Mr. Trump’s golf course in Bedminster, where she is still on the payroll. An employee of the golf course drives her and a group of others to work every day, she says, because it is known that they cannot legally obtain driver’s licenses.
Though Morales appears to enjoy her job at the golf club — and considers Trump to be “demanding but kind” — she and other undocumented workers have become disenchanted with the president.
Knowing full well it will almost certainly mean the end of her employment, Morales decided to contact the Times with her story.
Ms. Morales said she has been hurt by Mr. Trump’s public comments since he became president, including equating Latin American immigrants with violent criminals. It was that, she said, along with abusive comments from a supervisor at work about her intelligence and immigration status, that made her feel that she could no longer keep silent.
“We are tired of the abuse, the insults, the way he talks about us when he knows that we are here helping him make money,” she said. “We sweat it out to attend to his every need and have to put up with his humiliation.”
The Trump Organization did not comment specifically on Morales or any other employee but told the Times in a statement that any worker who submitted false documents will be fired.
“We have tens of thousands of employees across our properties and have very strict hiring practices,” Amanda Miller, the company’s senior vice president for marketing and corporate communications, said in a statement. “If an employee submitted false documentation in an attempt to circumvent the law, they will be terminated immediately.”
But Morales believes her employers always knew she was undocumented — possibly even Trump himself, as they had plenty of contact during her years cleaning his home.
“I ask myself, is it possible that this señor thinks we have papers? He knows we don’t speak English,” Ms. Morales said. “Why wouldn’t he figure it out?”