Tags: Immigration | Jeff Sessions | visa | program | H1-B1 | immigrant | workers

Sen. Jeff Sessions: Visa Programs Harm US Workers

By    |   Tuesday, 17 Mar 2015 07:16 PM

Sen. Jeff Sessions said Tuesday that "large corporations are using foreign-worker programs explicitly for the purpose of replacing American workers at lower wages.

"Americans of all backgrounds say companies should raise wages and improve working conditions before bringing in more labor from abroad," the Alabama Republican said after a hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee on an Obama administration proposal to increase the number of visas offered to high-tech workers.

"Wages are down, record numbers aren’t working, and welfare is at all-time highs," Sessions added. "It’s long past time to get people living here today back to work.

"The national interest, not the special interests, must guide our immigration policy," he said.

Sessions and Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, the panel's GOP chairman, said that the plan to expand the H1-B1 visas for foreign workers, from 65,000 to 115,000, would jeopardize Americans. Many of the visas are given to technology companies.

Two professors, Ronil Hira of Howard University and Hal Salzman of Rutgers University, argued that the large number of foreign workers in the STEM professions displaces American workers and depresses wages. Those jobs cover science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

The academics also testified that American colleges graduate twice as many students each year with STEM degrees as there are jobs to fill in those professions.

In addition, Sessions presented testimony from four former employees of Southern California Edison, a utility based in Rosemead, Calif., that is replacing about 500 workers with those brought in from India under the H1-B1 program, Computerworld reports.

The senator attacked the visa efforts as having "nothing to do with trying to find the 'best and brightest.'

"In fact, our current guest-worker and green card policies discourage and displace talented Americans from realizing their dreams," he said.

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Sen. Jeff Sessions said Tuesday that large corporations are using foreign-worker programs explicitly for the purpose of replacing American workers at lower wages. Americans of all backgrounds say companies should raise wages and improve working conditions before bringing...
Jeff Sessions, visa, program, H1-B1, immigrant, workers, STEM, increase
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2015-16-17
Tuesday, 17 Mar 2015 07:16 PM
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