A popular visa program allegedly is being misused by U.S. companies to lay off thousands of American workers and replace them with foreign labor.
And, adding insult to injury, many of the laid-off workers allegedly have been forced to train their replacements, in what one anonymous whistleblower called a “humiliating” experience.
The allegations have caught the attention of a bipartisan group of senators — including immigration hawk Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., and the No. 2 Senate Democrat, Illinois’ Dick Durbin — who are calling for a federal probe. A letter sent by 10 senators urging an investigation specifically cited reports of the firing and hiring practices at Southern California Edison, California’s second-largest utility. The incidents are concentrated in the IT field, and involve American workers being replaced by H-1B visa holders.
“A number of U.S. employers, including some large, well-known, publicly-traded corporations, have reportedly laid off thousands of American workers and replaced them with H-1B visa holders,” the senators wrote.
In the letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, and Labor Secretary Thomas Perez, the senators urged the departments to “investigate the unacceptable replacement of American workers” to see whether laws were broken.
The H-1B program is supposed to be used to bring in, on a temporary basis, skilled workers with highly specialized skills not readily available in the U.S. They are often used in the technology sector to bring in engineers and computer programmers.
Further, U.S. employers can hire foreign workers for up to six years and must pay them the same rate they would pay other workers with similar qualifications, or the prevailing wage for that job and location, whichever is higher. This is done to prevent foreign workers from depressing U.S. wages and from being exploited.
But reports have surfaced that the replacements are happening at an alarming rate. And former Southern California Edison workers have complained to lawmakers that they were replaced by less-skilled workers at lower costs. …..
Read more at the link.
I’ve only been writing about this since the blog moved from being exclusively about climate. But, even then, this has been a problem for years prior.
The program was designed by international corporations and politicians with the willful desire to bring the US down. Currently, as the US law is today, there is absolutely no incentive for American children to pursue a career in IT work. It doesn’t pay. It won’t pay. It’s a free ticket for immigrants. How much is legal status in the US worth today for people from Asia? They’ll work for next to nothing.
Eight years ago, I had the misfortune of working with a bunch of H-1B programmers. At the time, we were the 3rd largest school lunch software company for the US. I was tech support for the company, along with 8 other tech support people, 5 production people who built some cool gizmos, a supervisor who knew everything, and a sister programming facility in Wichita. We rocked! I did everything from beta testing to teaching a guy on an Arizona reservation about Active Directory (MS). I worked with some brilliant IT people on a program to conflate all of the school programs to where the lunch program would communicate with the attendance program which would communicate with the library program …. etc …. etc ……
Then, the owners got old and decided to sell. Then our sister facility hire a bunch of people. I couldn’t understand them. Some were from China, some from India, some from somewhere south of Mexico. When it would take us an hour to fix a programming error, then it would take us days and weeks. I left for greener pastures, they got bought out.
Today, where the company originated, there’s 4 workers. Most stay at home and work over the phone. Their pay is crap for the expertise they have. One young man, I’m in awe of. He’s a good friend of mine. I helped train him for the job. I knew him previously, but, didn’t really interact that much with him. But, he was, even then, clearly bright. Today, I’d trust him with every facet of computers. He programs, and well, he’s fantastic at IT work. Data bases are no problem for him! I can’t communicate to you how “golly gee whiz” this man is! ….. last I checked he gets paid <$20/hr. Why would anyone ……
I don’t. And, I won’t. My country and my people lied to me. I educated myself in such things, only to have my country import millions of competitors for my job. They can go to hell. If people don’t, by now, understand why it is important not to depend on foreign labor, then, the fall of the Roman Empire will forever repeat itself. I can’t fix stupid.