US H1B visa outsourcing of Federal jobs stopped by Trump

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President Trump about to sign an Executive Order on Hiring American 3 August 2020

White House Photo by Tia Dufour

Comments by Sanwar Ali:

Many on the extreme right such as Breitbart News make highly misleading claims about migrant workers on H1B visas.   They have written recently about H1B visa workers and the recent Trump outsourcing restrictions.  H1B visa workers are not low paid workers and are in many cases highly paid IT specialists.  When it is convenient for them Trump owned businesses employ large numbers of overseas workers on visas such as the H2B visa and H1B visa.

Breitbart has in the past employed far right political commentators such as Milo Yiannopoulos who has been banned both from Facebook and Twitter.  Breitbart News was co-founded by Steve Bannon former Trump Chief Stategist who is also widely considered to be on the far right.  Recently it has emerged that the Senate Intel Committee in July 2019 had asked the Justice Department to investigate Bannon as part of the Russia probe.  In March 2018 Bannon spoke at a meeting of the far-right National Front in France, where he apparently told attendees:

“Let them call you racists. Let them call you xenophobes. Let them call you nativists. Wear it as a badge of honor.” 

In fact, H1B workers bring with them enormous economic and innovation benefits to the US.  There is also evidence to suggest that H1B workers result in increased salaries for American workers.

US President, Donald Trump, has signed an executive order preventing government agencies from outsourcing jobs to H1B visa holders. During signing the order at the White House, Trump told attendees: “We believe jobs must be offered to American workers first.”

Breitbart News claims that companies in the US have filled approximately 18,000 government agency jobs with foreign contract workers using the H1B visa program.

Trump claims outsourcing is unfair for Federal employers

An official statement from the White House said: “President Trump is signing an Executive Order to create a policy where Federal agencies will focus on United States labor in lucrative Federal contracts. It would be unfair for Federal employers to replace perfectly qualified Americans with workers from other countries.

“The Executive Order will require all Federal agencies to complete an internal audit and assess whether they comply with the requirement that only United States citizens and nationals are appointed to the competitive service.

“The Department of Labor will also finalize guidance to prevent H1B employers from moving H1B workers to other employers’ job sites to displace American workers.”

According to the statement, it would be ‘detrimental to outsource hundreds of workers in the middle of a pandemic’, which has already resulted in millions of job losses for American workers.

The statement added: “President Trump’s actions will help combat employers’ misuse of H1B visas, which were never intended to replace qualified American workers with low-cost foreign labor.”

Immigrants welcome but Americans come first

Trump’s executive order comes at a time when several recent polls have shown that American voters want to welcome immigrants, but remain firm on hiring US workers first, before recruiting foreign staff.

The US President moved to sign the executive order after learning about the outsourcing via paid for online advertising being funded by US Tech Workers. Trump originally disregarded the advertisement.

In response, US Tech Workers took to Twitter, stating: “Trump called our ad FAKE. We’re thrilled. But there’s nothing “Fake” about Trump's $8 million employee replacing American TVA workers with foreign workers. What happened to putting American workers 1st? RT this. Save jobs for US.”

Those attending the signing of the executive order included Kevin Lynn, the founder of US Tech Workers and the founder of Protect US Workers, Sara Blackwell.

Kevin Lynn said: “This is a really significant moment for US tech workers. US graduates know what decades of outsourcing and offshoring of these valuable jobs have done to themselves personally and collectively, to the country.”

“We’ve been very much involved for the last three years to protect and preserve tech worker jobs here in the US and in particular, fighting outsourcing schemes.

“So, this is a great opportunity for us, it’s really a culmination of a lot of hard work … [We’re] really, really overjoyed as of this time that the President of the United States has chosen to act on behalf of American workers.”

Breitbart claims about Fortune 500 companies outsourcing

Breitbart claims that Fortune 500 companies and ‘networks of US and Indian-owner subcontractors’ have used the H1B visa program to outsource college-graduate jobs by the millions over the last 20 years.

The report claims that 1.3 million foreign contract workers are keeping US graduates out of jobs, 600,000 of which are reportedly occupied by H1B visa holders. Several contract workers are recruited by top firms on US wages. However, the majority of H1B visa holders are hired on wages below market value.

It’s widely reported that many company executives prefer to recruit contract workers because they keep their heads down and get the job done, whereas American workers are more argumentative and often leave their job if they’re unhappy.

Contract workers are often hired for 12-month stints in the US before returning to their home country to do their job from an office there. They tend to accept low wages in the US as working conditions are better than those in India, China and other countries that receive a lot of H1B visas.

US employers also lure workers with the promise of green cards and US citizenship, claims  Breitbart. However, hundreds of thousands of workers, especially Indians, have waited decades for a green card.

Trump buy American, hire American policy

Trump’s latest executive order is in line with his ‘buy American, hire American’ policy, which he promised when inaugurated as US President.

During his presidential campaign in 2016, Trump said: “I will end forever the use of the H1B as a cheap labor program, and institute an absolute requirement to hire American workers first for every US visa and immigration program. No exceptions.”

On June 22, Trump temporarily banned US work visas, including the H1B program, until the end of 2020. The ban may even continue into 2021.  The work visa ban has actually been relaxed recently to a certain extent.

Workpermit.com can help with US employment-based visas

If you would like to apply for a US work visa – including L1 visasE2 visasO1 visas and H1B visas - Workpermit.com can help. 

Workpermit.com is a specialist visa services firm with over thirty years of experience dealing with visa applications. We can help with a wide range of visa applications to your country of choice. Contact us for further details.  You can also telephone 0344 991 9222.