- Authorize employers to displace qualified U.S. workers with H-1b foreign workers
- Authorize employers to sponsor H-1b workers without first recruiting qualified U.S. workers.
- Allow employers to fill the bulk of U.S. tech jobs with virtual indentured servants by adding 140,000 employer-sponsored greencards each year.
- Set the base H-1b quota at 150,000 per year (Incorrect)
- Provide Unlimited exemptions for advanced degrees from U.S. universities PLUS unlimited advanced degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) from foreign universities
June 5th Correction: This bill does not set the H-1b quota to 150,000 per year. On May 30th details were sketchy, and I apparently confused the 150,000 that AeA is calling for with a provision in the bill.
Aside from a sham "prevailing wage" that allows employers to pay wages far below average and still be in compliance, the above points are the key H-1b reforms that U.S. tech workers have needed.
The fifth bullet point alone could potentially flood in several hundred thousand foreign workers independent from the 150,000 quota. Why would employers hire new U.S. BS grads when the market would be flooded with workers with advanced degrees, willing to work cheap in exchange for one of the 140,000 annual green card sponsorships?
Note that for U.S. grads the exemption applies to degrees in ANY major - including the proverbial "basket-weaving" - even in professions where Americans cannot find work.
There are about 3.5 million total tech jobs in the U.S., and roughly 200,000 of those become open each year, mostly due to attrition. (Bill Gates cites 2 million new jobs in the next decade - that's what he's referring to - mostly just replacement of people that move on - by choice or by displacement.)
In 2004 American colleges and universities awarded 233,492 undergraduate Science and Engineering degrees, according to Robert J. Samuelson in "A Phony Science Gap." The vast majority - perhaps 90% - of these were awarded to U.S. workers.
Clearly there are enough American graduates to fill all jobs. But these Senators intend to fill at least 150,000 (plus other exemptions) with foreign workers. Then employers will use the 140,000 green card sponsorships to create virtual indentured servants of these workers.
These Senators must be held accountable. Please phone them and your two state senators today! (Find them at www.congress.org)
- Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) : (202) 224-3441
- Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) : (202) 224-2934
- Senator Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) : (202) 224-4242
- Senator Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT) : (202) 224-5251
If there were truly a tech labor shortage, then the degreed and experienced U.S. workers included in these layoffs would be quickly picked up by other Compete America member companies. But that rarely happens.
"This amendment puts U.S. immigration control in the hands of foreign and multi-national corporations whose interests are often contrary to the best interests of the United States," warns Kim Berry, president of the Programmers Guild. "The bill literally allows citizens of other countries to petition their fellow foreigners for U.S. green cards, without regard for the impact on Americans or America."