Because of the current economic situation, legal immigrants have now become the target for a lot of anger from politicians to the average citizen nad are being targeted in many ways.
The Seattle Times and many other news organization have being reporting on the H1B visa fraud that has been rife whereby companies mainly in the IT sector have been illegally employing immigrants under the terms of the H1B visa.
Without going into to many details, simply put, the rules of this visa state you must be;
- gainfully employed by your approved employer
- working only on approved job sites for extended periods
- paid the prevailing wage for your profession and location
- be a full employee and some sort of contractor or consultant paid for specific projects
- be treated as any other employee under all relevant labor laws
Essentially these firms that have been engaging in this visa fraud for years, have been violating many and sometimes all of the above requirements.
One of the most common is “benching” employees and treating them as contractors and only paying them when they are on a specific project. Then often taking a portion of the salary as some sort of agency fee and threatening deportation and bad conditions to employees who dare to complain.
A trick they often engage in is to force employees to sign documents to say they have ill for long periods and unable to work to legally get around the fact they have to continue to pay them the salary stated in the initial visa petition.
Now in some cases also, applicants and immigrant employees have also being engaging in fraud by forging credentials, degrees, etc. but usually that is in full cooperation with a company who is well aware this is the case as ultimately a company should always know whom they are employing and what their background is.
Like with Ellis Island 100-150 years ago and following World War 1 and World War 2, waves of immigrants do want to begin a new life in the US and give the best to their families. However today it is much of corporate America that is screwing these International workers and at the same time their American counterparts by becoming involved in this conduct.
US workers are angry that they are losing jobs to immigrant workers and are angry that they are being laid off while immigrants are retaining their jobs. You can understand this type of anger and definitely sympathize with it.
However when elements of the media and especially members of all levels of government engage in spreading falsehoods and a “blame the immigrant” mentality to cover up their own crappy performance and policies, that is when you get mad!
This sort of public spin has of course gone on for hundreds of years towards the Irish, the Greeks and Italians, the Hispanics and now the educated Asians but in the end it is all these groups of people and numerous other groups that make the USA what it is.
A company like Google would not exist if it wasn’t for this same immigrant story and think how many Americans it employs all across the country let alone the immigrants which intern has create a whole industry which further employs people and so the cycle continues.
I came across a site called Immigrant Voice which is another site along with this one trying to help people on H-1B visas and all the others like E-3, L-1, F-1, J-1, etc. fight their battles in an already tough environment.
So please share you story here so we can all learn..