The President’s Executive Order

There’s appears to be a need to revise the well intention-ed Executive order so it would be effective. The college option is still a back door to those who want to exploit the H1b visa as most companies use this particular method and have been for years. “They won’t have CS degrees from MIT, but will have Master’s in Information Science from Cal State Long Beach, say, and will be much cheaper than the Americans. I did say “hire,” by the way; even if outright replacement of Americans were banned as part of the deal, the employers would just wait for attrition, hiring the foreign students one at a time.” – Norm Matloff.

Upon Closer inspection

Today President Trump issued his long-awaited Buy American, Hire American executive order. A number of people have asked me what this means for the H-1B work visa and related programs such as Optional Practical Training (OPT). Let’s take the latter first.

As many of you know, OPT is an extension of the F-1 student visa. Though it was intended to give foreign students a chance to work in one-year internships after earning their American degrees, it became an unofficial supplement to H-1B. Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama both extended it much beyond one year, and it now serves in essence as a backdoor way to expand the yearly cap on new H-1B visas. There is no cap on OPT.

So OPT is a major issue. However, it is not mentioned in the executive order. Why not? Once again, this is an “Intels Good, Infosyses Bad” issue. As…

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American Victims of H-1B Get Their Chance — Will They Take It?

I’m truly grateful for the opportunity to be in the IT Industry. It has given me the chance to work with and meet a lot of incredible individuals. My start in this field was in 1999 for a company in Astoria NY two years before 911. I remember that well because I my position was “eliminated” just as an intern had been awarded a VISA from the lottery one month prior. That was sadly my introduction to the H1B visa program. Little did I know how much worse this new trend was going to become. Here we are in 2017 and the IT industry has all but rendered extinct the American IT worker and the job security this field once provided individuals who chose to make this a career. I’ve been fortunate enough to be mobile as to be able to stay in my field, which blessed me with living although temporarily, in wonderful cities such as Pittsburgh, Chicago, Philadelphia, and North Carolina. One such place Chicago, touched me particularly for the circumstance to which I had been employed there. Unbeknownst to me I had been employed by the very company who replaced the entire iSeries IT department. I actually attended the going away party. I currently live in Long Island and I want to stay here so for them and for myself I’m blowing those job taking companies out of the water.

Upon Closer inspection

Two key parts of the Trump administration have now announced something of a get-tough policy on H-1B employers. Today USCIS released a memo announcing the policy, and DOJ released a similar statement. To my knowledge, this is the first time that American STEM workers have been given a voice.

On the surface, the USCIS document is the less powerful of the two, as it says that it will focus on the H-1B-dependent employers. But its language is quite general:

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) today announced multiple measures to further deter and detect H-1B visa fraud and abuse. The H-1B visa program should help U.S. companies recruit highly-skilled foreign nationals when there is a shortage of qualified workers in the country. Yet, too many American workers who are as qualified, willing, and deserving to work in these fields have been ignored or unfairly disadvantaged. Protecting American workers by…

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