President Trump will sign an order today aimed at changing the H-1B visa program that brings in highly skilled workers from overseas.
The White House claims the H-1B program undercuts American workers by bringing in lower wage laborers and said it has been the practice of some tech companies to hire large numbers of workers and drive down wages.
The order will be known as “Buy American, Hire American.” It requests that the departments of Homeland Security, Justice, Labor and State offer new rules to prevent immigration fraud and abuse. Those departments would also be asked to propose changes so that the H-1B visas are awarded to the “most-skilled or highest-paid applicants.”
The H-1B visas are giving out via a lottery system. Approximately 85,000 are distributed annually, mostly to technology companies, who argue that the United States has a shortage of skilled technology workers.
Some say the program has been abused by staffing companies that use the visas to import foreigners who aren’t necessarily the “best and brightest.” The visa recipients happily work for less than Americans. These staffing companies are then selling their services to corporate clients who use them to outsource tech work.
Trump is signing the order at the Wisconsin headquarters of tool manufacturer Snap-on Inc. which is located in the congressional district of House Speaker Paul Ryan. Speaker Ryan will not be joining the president because he’s on a bipartisan congressional trip visiting NATO countries.
With close to 95 million Americans out of work, what’s your opinion on the H-1B visa program? Share your opinion in the comments section below.