In what may sound like horrible news for H-1B visa applicants, Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s Justice Department issued a warning to employers earlier on Monday, asking them for the first time in recent history to not discriminate against US born workers by over hiring foreign labor using the aforementioned visa program.
Tom Wheeler who is the Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Rights Division released an official statement which says that the US Justice Department will no longer tolerate any type of discrimination against US workers from domestic employers via misusing the H1-B visa program.
“U.S. workers should not be placed in a disfavored status, and the department is wholeheartedly committed to investigating and vigorously prosecuting these claims,”
The process of accepting H1-B visas petitions for 2018 i.e. the next fiscal year is already in progress by the department. Last year, the number of H1-B visa recipients was capped at 85,000 and the limit was reached in less than 7 days after the application period started.
The H1-B visa program is basically a non immigrant visa that permits US companies to temporarily hire foreign/non US workers in a specialty job, most often in the IT field or science.
US President Donald Trump is well known for his campaign rhetoric against the H1-B visa program and his new Attorney General Jeff Sessions has also long targeted the system.
AG Sessions said recently in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing that:
“It’s simply wrong to think that we’re in a totally open world and that any American with a job can be replaced if somebody in the world is willing to take a job for less pay,”
Photo: Graeme Jennings/Examiner