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On August 12, 2010 Chuck Schumer proudly spoke of the Senate Passage of legislation which would combat the abuse of the guest worker visa.  He stated that the guest workers were being imported to undermine American workers.


"Their business model is to bring foreign tech workers into the United States who are willing to accept less pay than their American counterparts, place these workers into other companies in exchange for a “consulting fee,” and transfer these workers from company to company in order to maximize profits from placement fees. In other words, these companies are petitioning for foreign workers simply to then turn around and provide these same workers to other companies who need cheap labor for various short term projects."

He issues a stern reprimand to such companies and was satisfied that they would now be required to hire U.S. workers:

But if you are using the H-1B visa to run a glorified international temp agency for tech workers in contravention of the spirit of the program, I and my colleagues believe that you should have to pay a higher fee to ensure that American workers are not losing their jobs because of unintended uses of the visa program that were never contemplated when the program was created.

In an August 6, 2010, Wall Street Journal article, Avinash Vashistha—the CEO of a Bangalore based off-shoring advisory consulting firm—told the Journal that the new fee in this bill “would accelerate Indian firms’ plans to hire more American-born workers in the U.S.” What’s wrong with that? In an August 7, 2010 Economic Times Article, Jeya Kumar, a CEO of a top IT company, said that this bill would “erode cost arbitrage and cause a change in the operational model of Indian offshore providers.”

The leaders of this business model are agreeing that our bill will make it more expensive to bring in foreign tech workers to compete with American tech workers for jobs here in America. That means these companies are going to start having to hire U.S. tech workers again.

But that was then.

Less than two years later some time in March 2012.....

The job outsourcers were outraged that U.S. elected officials would put the welfare of their constituents over those of corporations.  A representative of the Indian outsourcers promptly summoned a meeting with Schumer and Reid.

What could possibly have happened in that meeting?

After this meeting, Schumer and Reid promptly did an about face. To the horror of many constituents, all concern for U.S. workers was out the window.  

The concern shifted from the high unemployment of U.S. workers to the problems of the "glorified international temp agencies".

It seems the minor fee modifications to the generous guest worker program was working exactly as as Schumer intended!  The corporate abusers were complaining about difficulty obtaining all the work visas like H-1B and L-1 for their foreign temp workers to take jobs in the U.S!

Influential senator from New York Chuck Schumer and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid met Indian American hotelier and chairman of Indian-American Democrats Sant Singh Chatwal at his Manhattan hotel here March 23.

During the nearly hour-long meeting, the three discussed India-U.S. bilateral relations, with Chatwal raising concerns of Indian IT corporations regarding problems faced by them in obtaining work visas like H-1B and L1 for their employees.

Reid and Schumer expressed appreciation for the contribution made by the growing Indian American community to the American economy, saying concerns regarding the visas are being addressed and taken care of.

"I am working to try and change the immigration laws so more Indians can come (to the United States). One of the things that Harry and I care a lot about is changing the visas. So more Indians can come here to travel," Schumer told PTI after the meeting.

He said while Indians, Chinese, and Russians are keen to come to the United States, "the visa laws are a little bit too restrictive so we are working on a bipartisan bill. Harry Reid is going to try to help us get it passed very fast."

Schumer, the third-ranking Senate Democrat,  said he is a strong supporter of provisions to increase the H-1B visa cap for high-skilled foreign workers and allowing foreign graduates with advanced technical degrees to gain permanent residency in the United States.
Even with the the high unemployment rate, the evidence that there is no shortage of highly skilled U.S. workers and that many skilled U.S. workers are being laid off and forced to train their foreign H-1B visa replacements, Schumer wants to triple the amount of foreign workers these temp agency and outsourcing corporations are allowed to bring in each year to transition more jobs offshore.

Most people don't realize that it is not against the law for companies to bypass the U.S. labor market.  For most companies, there is no requirement to seek a U.S. worker before importing a foreign worker.  In fact, it is legal for most corporations to force their U.S. workers to train their own foreign replacement before being laid off.

With Schumer and Reid under the influence of corporate outsourcers, they probably will not consider co-signing or even bringing bill S.600 up for a vote.  This bill adds some protections for U.S. workers and job seekers.

If anyone still wondering why unemployment is high in the U.S? Isn't the Democratic party supposed to be the party of labor?

PETITION - Don't Let The Gang of Eight Kill American Jobs

If you would like to help U.S. workers get back to work:

1.  Please sign the above petition.

2.  Please CALL (don't write) the offices of your senators and representatives, and make FOLLOWUP calls.

3. Ask your senators to consider co-signing senate bill S.600, a bill introducing some limitations on the use of the H-1B guest worker visa.  This bill requires all companies to make a good faith effort to hire American workers first, before considering foreign workers.  Why would any elected official be against this?

Remember, congress relies 10% on well-stated arguments and 90% on pressure.  That
pressure must come from us.

It ought to be easy for the above petition to get 1,000 signatures in a short time.  Believe it or not, even that small number (relative to the U.S. population) would have an impact.  Tell your friends!

Originally posted to IT Professional on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 04:37 AM PDT.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions.

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