jobs

Victory for American tech workers

WASHINGTON � Today, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower federal court ruling that displaced American tech workers lacked standing to challenge Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations authorizing alien employment in the United States.

In this case, the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) represents Save Jobs USA, which is made up of former employees of Southern California Edison. That public utility drew bipartisan criticism in Congress when it displaced 500 of its American employees after forcing them to train their cheaper foreign replacements.

As spelled out in federal law, the H-4 visa allows the spouses of H-1B guestworkers to “accompany” the alien to or “join” the alien in the United States. Under the Obama Administration, DHS added to the law governing the H-4 visa by allowing H-4 spouses to work in the United States. Since many of these foreign tech-workers’ spouses are tech workers themselves, Save Jobs USA filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia that challenged DHS’s authority to issue these work authorizations.

The district court held that Save Jobs USA lacked standing to bring the lawsuit because it did not suffer an injury from the employment of their H-1B competitors. Today, however, the D.C. Circuit, in reaffirming the “competitor standing doctrine,” held that Save Jobs USA did suffer injury from the regulation and had standing to sue.

The case will now return to the district court for a decision on whether DHS has the authority to permit H-4 spouses to work.

“The media has largely ignored the problem of DHS creating guestworker programs through regulation,” said John M. Miano, counsel for IRLI. “The Constitution gives Congress authority over the immigration system, but more labor now enters the U.S. job market through regulation than under laws passed by Congress.”

“The Save Jobs USA case has major implications for the immigration system,” said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI. “If the courts hold that DHS does have the authority it claims to permit alien employment through regulation, it can continue to wipe out the protections for American workers that Congress has enacted. We are pleased by the court’s decision on standing, and will press forward to get this unlawful foreign workers’ program overturned.”

The case is Save Jobs USA v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security, No. 16-5287 (D.C. Cir.).

Employer discrimination against U.S. citizen workers exposed

The Center for Immigration Studies recently completed a study of cases brought before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to document some of the negative effects of immigration on the labor market.  Specifically, CIS looked at EEOC cases dealing with preferences shown by employers for non-citizen workers.

The results of the study quantify what many citizens are encountering today when seeking employment – employers who pass over citizen job-seekers and, instead, hire foreign workers to keep wages low and get greater profits for the business or institution 

What is the Oregon Congressional delegation doing about this problem?  See their voting records linked at end of this message.

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The CIS report is titled:  No Americans Need Apply; EEOC lawsuits reveal how employers are eager to replace low-skill native workers with immigrants.

NumbersUSA summarized the report briefly in its Weekly Newsletter, emailed on Friday, Oct. 25, to subscribers:

“On Thursday, the Center for Immigration Studies held a panel discussion at the National Press Club in coordination with the release of a new report: ‘examining real-world case studies in which the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has sued employers for systematically favoring low-skill immigrants over native workers.’

“On the panel was Jason Richwine, the report's author, Peter Kirsanow, partner at a law firm specializing in labor and employment law who is also a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, and Kevin Lynn, executive director of Progressives for Immigration Reform.

“Richwine highlighted that his report was qualitative research and that he ‘did not go beyond the facts as alleged in the lawsuits’ brought by the EEOC. It is his contention that the pattern of accusations of employer discrimination ‘calls into question [claims] there are zero negative effects from immigration.’

“Kirsanow, who has testified several times before Congress, talked about the total lack of interest shown by the Congressional Black Caucus in credible reports forwarded to them by the Civil Rights Commission of discrimination against black Americans in favor of illegal immigrants. He found their silence on this issue ‘an abomination.’

“Lynn spoke out against discrimination in the tech industry, which is particularly pronounced against women in STEM fields and recent college graduates, who are increasingly being passed over by companies in favor of cheaper foreign labor.

“CIS is bringing attention to a very real problem, and one that has existed for many years. Unfortunately, many in the media who cover immigration issues have shown little interest in looking at the existing evidence of discrimination against American workers in favor of foreign ones, but the evidence is clearly visible to those who do care to look.”

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Oregon’s Congressional delegation has done nothing about this serious problem and continues to support virtually unlimited immigration.  All Oregon Representatives will be up for reelection next year, and one Senator also: Jeff Merkley.

The Oregon delegation’s voting records on immigration issues are here.  

For the years 2017-2019, Sen. Merkley gets F- on “reducing unnecessary worker visas” and F- on “reducing illegal jobs and presence.” So do Sen. WydenRep. BlumenauerRep. Bonamici, Rep. DeFazio, and Rep. Schrader.  Not only on bills specifically supporting U.S. citizen workers vs. legal and illegal foreign nationals, did they all say No, but they also said No to many other bills that would control immigration and stop the enormous population growth caused by excessive immigration.

To see good condensations of their histories on important areas of immigration policy, click these links:

Sen. Merkley - https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/1341/gradescoresheet/

Sen. Wyden - https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/667/gradescoresheet/

Rep. Blumenauer - https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/676/gradescoresheet/

Rep. Bonamici - https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/7047/gradescoresheet/

Rep. DeFazio - https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/677/gradescoresheet/

Rep. Schrader - https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/1323/gradescoresheet/

Woodburn School District discriminated against teacher candidate based on citizenship status, Justice Department finds

The Woodburn School District discriminated against an applicant who was the most qualified for a teaching job but was denied the position because of his citizenship status, the U.S. Department of Justice found.

The rejected candidate was a work-authorized, conditional permanent resident but not a U.S. citizen. He had applied for a Spanish teaching job at Woodburn Academy of Arts and Sciences.

In a settlement announced Tuesday, the school district must pay the candidate $5,774.81...

The Justice Department also found the district inappropriately prescreened the candidate by asking him for specific documentation to verify his citizenship status and work authorization...

The Immigration and Nationality Act prohibits employers from refusing to hire certain work-authorized, non-U.S. citizens because of their citizenship status...

The Woodburn School District "appreciates the Department of Justice’s investigation and guidance,'' according to a statement released by the district Tuesday.

"While the investigation involved a single incident that took place over a year ago, the District takes it seriously and will use it as a training opportunity to prevent future incidents,'' the statement said.

The Immigrant and Employee Rights section of the Justice’s Department’s Civil Rights Division received a complaint from the applicant on Aug. 20, 2018...

The Woodburn School District...must not discriminate against applicants or employees based on citizenship, immigration status or national origin, when recruiting, hiring or firing employees, the settlement says.

The district must ensure human resources staff, school supervisors and other staff are trained to comply with the law. New staff involved in recruitment or hiring decisions must view a Justice Department webinar on The Immigration and Nationality Act and document they’ve seen it within 60 days of their hiring or selection, the agreement says.

If any further violations are identified during the the three years of the agreement, Justice Department officials will give the school district 30 days to correct the problem without initiating a new investigation.

Woodburn School District Superintendent William Rhoades signed the agreement Oct. 10.

"The District is fully committed to compliance with the law and highly committed to supporting equity for our immigrant community,'' the district said in its statement. "We especially recognize the contributions of our immigrant staff, students and families and we continually seek to improve our practice.''


 

Petition Pres. Trump to stop H-1B Visa Abuses

Alert date: 
September 25, 2019
Alert body: 

The H-1B visa program has already displaced U.S. workers on a grand scale.  Now comes S.386, pending in the U.S. Senate, which would dramatically change our system for awarding H-1B employment green cards to further enrich businesses such as Intel, Microsoft, Amazon, Google, etc. at the expense of U.S. workers. This bill, S.386, is misleadingly named the Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act.  It’s a companion bill to H.R.1044, which passed the House on July 10, with Oregon’s Congressional delegation all voting in favor of it.  Oregon’s Reps. Blumenauer and Bonamici were among the co-sponsors of H.R. 1044.  Both of Oregon’s Senators, Wyden and Merkley, are co-sponsors of S.386.

Groups of displaced U.S. workers are now organizing to fight against this injustice.  Many of them have been forced to train their foreign-worker replacements or lose any severance payments if they decline to train replacements.  Please help U.S. citizen workers by signing the White House petition.  President Trump’s office has set up a system enabling the public to initiate petitions, and any petition with enough signatures by a certain date will be reviewed by his office.  This petition (https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/petition-not-pass-bill-hr-1044-s386-fairness-high-skilled-immigrants-act-2019) has been posted asking him to oppose both bills.

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Further Reading:  Excerpt from a report dated Sept. 18, 2019, by Jessica Vaughan of the Center for Immigration Studies:

This bill is anything but fair to U.S. workers, because it strengthens and perpetuates a system that is actively displacing them. It offers a major concession to employers who have bypassed U.S. workers for decades, without reforming the system to reduce guestworker admissions or prevent employers from replacing U.S. workers. This is one reason that DHS issued a statement opposing the bill when the House considered it earlier this year.

It eliminates a control known as the per-country cap, which meters issuance of green cards so that they are distributed to applicants from all countries before citizens of any one country can go above a certain number. Under this system, applicants from India now receive 20 percent of the employment green cards. Most of the applicants from India hold temporary visas (usually H-1B) as contract workers in technology occupations, and the number of green card applicants greatly exceeds the number of visas available, especially with the per-country cap. But according to USCIS, if the cap were eliminated, citizens of India would suddenly be able to claim nearly 100 percent of the employment green cards — for the next 10 years. So, applicants from all other countries would effectively be blocked for the foreseeable future. This also means that U.S. employers who want to sponsor new foreign workers for green cards from any other part of the world would no longer be able to do so.

The Indian contract workers who are waiting for the chance to apply for a green card may apply for a visa extension and are not forced to leave the United States. And they still have their jobs — unlike the Americans they replaced.

Sources tell us that an actual vote is highly unlikely; instead, a unanimous consent request from a senator is more likely, which allows them to bypass the committee process, hearings, amendments, and, most importantly, a public debate. Reportedly, even at this late hour, most offices still do not have a final version of the legislation to review.

The Senate version of the bill was co-introduced by Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Kamala Harris (D-Calif.). Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) had blocked it from unanimous consent because of concerns that it would reduce the admission of foreign nurses. Reportedly, Sen. Paul has recently agreed to let it come up if it includes a provision that would guarantee admission of 5,000 foreign nurses on temporary visas each year for the next 10 years. This will please U.S. hospitals, which generally prefer to import nurses from abroad rather than expand the number of slots for Americans to enter domestic nursing schools to fill the need. Since when is nursing a job Americans won't do?

The best solution to this issue is not to scrap the per country cap, or to increase the number of green cards, as some have argued, but to enact a merit-based system for awarding employment green cards that rewards the most qualified, talented, and likely to succeed, regardless of their country of origin.

Labor Day, Sept. 2, 2019: Four decades of peanuts for workers, courtesy of Congress

Enormous levels of immigration over recent decades have caused wages for all U.S. workers to fall behind. Large numbers of citizens’ wages are now so low that they live from payday to payday and cannot save anything for emergencies or for a comfortable retirement. We see widespread homelessness due partly to rents beyond the reach of many low-paid workers.

Who’s responsible for these developments?  Congress sets the immigration laws, including numbers of immigrants.  Oregon’s Congressional delegation has consistently voted for increases in immigration, lax-to-no enforcement of immigration law, and expensive benefits to illegal aliens, enticing further illegal immigration.

To see the Oregon delegations’ grades over their entire careers, click here.
Here are their grades based on their recent voting records in Congress, as documented by NumbersUSA:

F- :  Senator Jeff Merkley, Senator Ron Wyden, Representatives Suzanne Bonamici, Earl Blumenauer, Peter DeFazio, Kurt Schrader

B  :  Representative Greg Walden

Senator Merkley is up for reelection next year, as are all of Oregon’s 5 Representatives.

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Labor Day: Four Decades of Dramatic CEO Income Growth; Peanuts for Workers

By Joe Guzzardi, Progressives for Immigration Reform,  August 29, 2019

Excerpts:

A recent Economic Policy Institute Study titled “CEO Compensation Has Grown 940% since 1978” is a Labor Day lament for American workers whose wages during the same period have only increased a meager 12%. EPI’s analysis found that this exorbitant, unconscionable earnings differential is the major income inequality contributor, and has persisted through equally indifferent Democrat and Republican administrations. …

CEOs have unquestionably taken full advantage of their power to enrich themselves, and suppress lower-echelon employee wages. But another variable that contributes to 40 years of flat wages for hourly workers is the executive suite’s addiction to cheap, foreign labor. With what has been an unbroken inflow of illegal immigrant and legal guest workers, between 750,000 and 1 million annually, corporations have no incentive to increase domestic workers’ salaries – and they haven’t. …

That immigration grows the economy is the age-old, half-truth argument. Sure, more people and more workers create a bigger economy. But immigration does not help the per capita income. Immigration’s benefits accrue to the immigrants and to their employers, and not the general public. The traditional solution to filling job openings is to offer higher wages, not import more cheap labor. With more than 6.1 million people unemployed, that pool should be tapped first.

Congress will soon reconvene, but as it has been for too many legislative sessions, creating a fairer immigration system that protects instead of harms American workers isn’t on the agenda.

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Read the complete article here.

To Increase Wages, Mandate E-Verify, Shrink Labor Market

Democratic presidential candidates have unanimously embraced the $15 federal minimum wage. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi threw her support behind the wage hike that would more than double the current $7.25 rate. Pelosi claims that not only would the wage increase give Americans more money in their paycheck, but would also boost the gross domestic product. When people have more purchasing power, they’ll spend more, and, predicted Pelosi, the GDP will therefore rise.

But a far more credible economic source than Pelosi made the opposite calculation. The Congressional Budget Office calculated that overall the $15 hourly wage would “would reduce the nation’s output slightly.” The CBO found that as many as 27 million workers, assuming they remained employed, could benefit. On the other hand, up to 3.7 million workers might lose their jobs as employers respond to higher overhead. Goods and services costs to consumers would inevitably rise.

That’s the thing about the $15 minimum wage hype – only one side of the story is told. A wage increase won’t be effective if employers don’t hire or if they dramatically reduce their hourly payrolls to adjust for the steep bump.

Moreover, the $15 wage is an artificial solution to increasing Americans’ paychecks. The lasting correction is to tighten the labor pool. The federal government can tighten the employment market in two ways: first, reduce the 1 million-plus legal immigrants who, as employment-authorized lawful permanent residents, enter the labor force annually.

Further, the government could reduce the roughly 750,000 temporary guest workers that come to the U.S. to perform an assortment of jobs that, for the most part, Americans would do, assuming a fair wage. The second tightening variable, and more immediate way to drive up wages, is to use E-Verify, the online program that ensures only legally authorized workers hold U.S. jobs.

To analyze how large influxes of immigrant workers, in this case, construction workers, impact the market, the Los Angeles Times studied the Southern California building trade. The Times wrote that over a few decades, construction workers went from being majority union, and majority U.S.-born, to majority immigrant. In the article conclusion, journalist Natalie Kitroeff wrote, “Nonunion shops made aggressive inroads into home building with workers who had less experience. The result: Today slightly more than 1 in 10 construction workers are in a union, compared with 4 in 10 in the 1970s….an influx of immigrants who would work for less made it easier for builders to quickly shift to a nonunion labor force…” A footnote: in a relatively short time, immigration played a leading role in eliminating solid, blue-collar United Brotherhood of Carpenters jobs that paid middle-class wages, offered health care, paid vacations and pensions.

But since major immigration reductions are not in the immediate future, the government could help by passing mandatory E-Verify. If passed, the program that would prevent unscrupulous employers from hiring illegal aliens and slow the flow of unlawful job-seeking foreign nationals, once the word was out. A tighter labor market results in an increase in wages for U.S. workers.

E-Verify has the overwhelming support of Americans and of companies like Costco that have used it for years. Early this year, a Houston Chronicle editorial made the interesting point that E-Verify would not only help legally present workers keep jobs, but also would protect exploited illegal immigrant workers from low pay and harsh conditions that, because of deportation fears, they’re afraid to report. With E-Verify, the onus is on employers to hire only legal workers.

For all the ballyhoo about the $15 minimum wage, nothing is ever said about tightening the labor market through lower immigration or mandating E-Verify, two solutions that would help the U.S. pay rate, still stuck at 1970 levels, to increase through normal market functions.

After ICE Raids, US Citizens Flock To Jobs

Less than one week after ICE raided 7 food processing facilities in Mississippi apprehending nearly 700 illegal workers, American citizens are rushing to freshly-available jobs.

Koch Foods is headquartered in Chicago but maintains a chicken processing facility in Mississippi that employed 243 of the 680 undocumented Latino workers arrested in the raids last Thursday. Koch has since collaborated with the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES), holding a job fair to recruit new, legal, workers, according to the Associated Press.

The fair raked in 200 applications before noon, according to local media. The company says it will require applicants to present two forms of identification before being hired, according to CNN. MDES will also vet all Mississippi workers for legality using the state’s E-Verify system, according to USA Today.

A Koch spokesman did not directly correlate the job fair with the raids. Instead he told the AP that holding job fairs is routine for the chicken processing plant, especially given America’s strong current economy. (RELATED: CNN’s Tapper: Is Trump Not Getting Enough Credit For The Economy?)

Job fairs “are part of normal efforts to employ,” Gilliand told AP. “In this environment of relative full employment, most businesses are looking for qualified applicants; Koch is no different.”

Dianne Bell of the Mississippi Department of Employment Security was involved in coordinating the job fair. She says that the immigration raid and Koch’s interest in recruitment of new legal workers went hand in hand.

“They reached out to us the very same day [as the raids],” Bell told USA Today, speaking on the collaborative recruitment effort between Koch and the MDES.

Those who are now seeking employment in the raided facilities cite high wages and frequent pay as reasons to take the exhausting job of a food processing worker, according to USA Today.

Last week’s ICE raids are “believed to be the largest single-state immigration enforcement operation in our nation’s history,” says to US Attorney for the Southern District Mike Hurst, according to CNN.

Many media outlets and commentators are attributing the raids to the Trump Administration or a racist agenda. However, acting ICE director Matt Albence maintained that immigration laws “are not new laws, nor is the enforcement of them new,” according to CNN.

HB 2015 work session set for Monday at 1pm

Alert date: 
June 6, 2019
Alert body: 

This is it, folks!

In 2014, Oregon voters said NO to driver licenses to anyone without proof of legal presence. But, the party in charge at the Oregon Legislature is so arrogant they are willfully working to overthrow the will of the people.

HB 2015 will have a work session Monday, June 10 at 1:00pm. Your calls, emails, tweets and Facebook posts are critical to shine a light on this bill. We can stop this - with YOUR help. Have you seen our billboards across the state? Take a photo and post on your social media page.

All the information you need is located here.

The answer to ag labor shortages

Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies makes a persuasive pitch for mechanization in agriculture, ending dependence on humans to do stoop labor and other exhausting manual chores on farms.

In his blog of April 26, “A Robot in Every Field, he says:

“… An individual farmer is understandably concerned with the next crop, but policymakers should have a longer time horizon. Americans get wealthier when productivity grows, and in agriculture that means, among other things, the development and adoption of labor-saving technologies.  …

“Foreign-worker programs that import stoop labor represent an intervention by government specifically designed to prevent the inevitable rise in farm-labor costs in modern societies caused by urbanization and increased employment opportunities elsewhere.

“Increasing wages and benefits will undoubtedly help draw some people into (or back into) the farm-labor force, but it's true that few Americans are going to cut broccoli all day in the hot sun. Even Mexicans aren't going into farm work anymore; as two scholars write, 'Mexico is following the pattern of countries around the world: as its income rises, workers shift out of farm work into other sectors.'

“The solution isn't to give in to the lobbyists and scour ever-more remote corners of the world for people still willing to submit to a medieval-work regime. Instead, we need to allow Julian Simon's scarcity/innovation dance to proceed, so that robots continue to replace humans in the fields. In fact, if the White House feels the need to service the ag lobby, why not propose mechanization-loan guarantees to help small farmers wean themselves off stoop labor? Rather than promise a chicken in every pot, why not a robot in every field?”

Read the complete blog here.

Later, Neil Munro, of Breitbart.com, gathered comments on Krikorian’s proposal, and, in his article of April 28, also describes the current progress of mechanization in agriculture.  His article can be viewed here.

Statue of Liberty Declares: STOP IMMIGRATION!

by  Tim Murray

Maybe you haven’t heard the terrible news. The United States, like almost every nation on the planet, is in serious population overshoot. This is a vastly different world than the one Emma Lazarus lived in. Hers was an America of seemingly unlimited resources. Ours is one of Limits to Growth.

Yes, there are still vast tracts of America that are sparsely populated. But it is not about how many people a nation can contain but how many it can sustain. The United States has a limited ecological carrying capacity, and there is every indication that it has been exceeded.

That is not only a disaster for us, but a catastrophe for the world. Put it this way. The very last thing that Mother Nature needs is another American consumer. Migration from less developed countries to developed nations like ours has a “multiplier” effect. The average migrant to the United States, for example, quadruples his GHG emissions upon arrival, and this applies to the consumption of resources as well. This is not surprising. After all, most immigrants come here precisely because they want to consume more. They want to enjoy the good life, or at least a materially better life, for themselves and their children.

To prospective immigrants I would say this. Our working poor and IT workers do not need your competition. Our bulging prisons and crowded classrooms cannot accommodate you. Our fruit and vegetable crops do not need you to harvest them. Our service and hospitality sector does not need your labour, nor does the home construction industry. We have Americans to do those jobs. All they need is a decent wage, and without immigration, there is a good chance that they would get it.

The era of smokestack industries and family farms is over. The era of A. I. and robots is soon to unfold. The demand for menial labor will plummet. We will be hard put to employ our working poor, never mind the global poor that Emma Lazarus and her modern day equivalents would welcome. In other words, your services will not be required.

So here’s some advice. Turn around and go back from whence you came. If things are still too rough at home, chances are that you can find suitable sanctuary in a country located in the same region. And if you do manage to make it back, could you please convey this message to your compatriots: Take responsibility for your family size. Understand that scarcity and the conflict that issues from it are in a large part a consequence of your nation’s runaway population growth. If your nation cannot grow the pie, it can, through aggressive family planning programs, increase the size of per capita “slices” by reducing the number of diners at the table.

I think you are a victim of a misunderstanding. The Statue of Liberty was meant to tell you that liberty, democracy and the rule of law can set the citizens of your country free. It was a prescription for good government, not an invitation to come and settle here. The Lazarus poem was an add-on twenty years after the statue was erected, and not congruent with the statement that the Statue was making. Immigration and liberty are apples and oranges.

In fact, higher population density requires more regulations and laws. Population growth is inversely correlated to liberty. As Isaac Asimov said in his famous “bathroom” metaphor. If there is only one tenant and one bathroom in an apartment, the tenant has “freedom of the bathroom”. He can access the bathroom at any time. But once another tenant or tenants come to share that same apartment, the original occupant must compete to use the bathroom. Rules of use or etiquette ensue. Tenants have no unrestricted freedom to use the bathroom whenever they like. And the more tenants who move in, the more restricted the residents will be.

Perhaps a name change would clarify the message. You have heard of the Statute of Limitations. I think Lady Liberty should be rechristened as the Statue of Limitations, and her torch be replaced by a stop sign.


Published by the Council of European Canadians
Read the full article here.

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