Friday, May 26, 2006

IEEE-USA blasts Senate high-tech visa provisons

The IEEE-USA once again lashed out against the Senate's inclusion of an amendment in their immigration bill which raises the H-1b cap with automatic increases of 20% every time the cap is reached.

The President of the IEEE-USA (Ralph Wyndrum) asked the most important question regarding this issue, which I don't recall a single US Senator asking: "how many high-tech workers can the United States absorb annually without driving up unemployment and driving down wages?"

I answer his question in my latest paper: Creating a Market Driven Foreign Guest Worker Cap in Software Occupations.


EE Times (05/26/2006 4:52 PM EDT)

WASHINGTON — The nation's leading engineering group expressed disappointment with immigration legislation approved this week by the Senate.

The controversial Senate immigration bill includes a provision raising the cap on H-1B visas for highly educated temporary workers by 50,000 to 115,000 per fiscal year. It also provides exemptions from both H-1B and employment-based, or "green card," visa caps for foreign workers with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering or mathematics.

High-tech and business groups lauded the bill as a boost for U.S. competitiveness.
But the IEEE-USA criticized the measure.

"We don’t understand why the Senate wants to expand a program that numerous government reports have found leaves U.S and foreign workers open to exploitation," IEEE-USA President Ralph Wyndrum, Jr. said in a statement released on Friday (May 26). "Fraud, abuse and misuse of the visas is rampant. The program should be fixed before it is expanded."

Moreover, Wyndrum said "the bill opens the spigot on numerous skilled visa categories. The question is how many high-tech workers can the United States absorb annually without driving up unemployment and driving down wages?"

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