Dan Rather explains the secret tech companies don't want you to know.

The Secret: Companies can fill white-collar jobs with citizens from abroad without ever seeking local Americans first...even worse, they can displace them.  But they can't do so for their blue-collar jobs because Congress made sure that blue-collar workers have the first crack at jobs on U.S. soil.


FACT: All employers can avoid recruiting and hiring U.S. workers first and they can displace Americans with an H1-b holder when:

  • the H1-b holder is paid $60,000 or more annually or
  • the H1-b is paid less than $60,000 but also holds a Masters degree related to the job tasks.

The above workers are called "exempt" H1-b non-immigrants. While H1-b law allows most employers to ignore U.S. workers and to displace U.S. workers, the law does require a small group of employers to pledge to seek and hire U.S. workers. The law also bars this group from displacing Americans. However, even these employers can legally displace Americans and never seek Americans--just by paying H1-bs $60,000 or hiring an H1-b with a Masters.

A fact sheet from the DOL's Wage & Hour Division states that the advantages of hiring "exempt" H1-bs is that H1-b dependent employers and willful violators "are relieved" from the additional obligations of US. worker recruitment and displacement.

Reporters and even Congressmen aren't aware that the H1-b program allows:

1. Companies like Google, IBM, Target and Manpower/Experis to only recruit foreign citizens first for jobs on U.S. soil. They can also displace their workers, or their client's workers with H1-bs.

2. Companies like Infosys and Tata that combined have approximately 25,000 jobs on U.S. soil, are required to seek and hire U.S. workers first and can't displace their U.S. workers or their clients' U.S. workers. However, they can "get around" these requirements by:

  • paying an H1-b $60,000 or more annually or
  • hiring an H1-b with a Masters related to the job tasks and paying him or her less than $60,000

Despite the fact that H1-b law divides employers into 2 categories for the purposes of requiring U.S. worker recruitment and non-displacement, a loophole exempts even those employers that ostensibly must seek Americans first and can't displace Americans.

Because Congress isn't protecting our freedom to compete for local jobs, national origin discrimination is now rampant in the tech industry. An EEO lawsuit against a global IT firm Infosys alleges that 90% of their U.S. employees are South Asian, despite the fact that South Asians only comprise 1%-4% of the U.S. IT workforce. It's gotten so bad that companies brazenly post "No Americans Need Apply" job ads.  Even IBM was caught posting such discriminatory ads.

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