H-1B video shocker: 'Our goal is clearly not to find a qualified ... U.S. worker'
Programmer group posts video of law firm's hiring advice on YouTube
Computerworld - The high-tech industry can tap big names, such as Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates, to argue that the U.S. needs more foreign workers with IT skills. But opponents of the H-1B visa program have a weapon that may prove just as effective: YouTube.
The Programmers Guild, a professional organization in Summit, N.J., has posted a video (see below) on YouTube LLC's Web site featuring excerpts from a series of videos that had been posted previously by Pittsburgh-based law firm Cohen & Grigsby PC. The law firm's videos were recorded May 15 during a seminar and apparently were intended to provide free legal tips to hiring managers and other viewers.
But the video put together by the Programmers Guild is providing explosive material for H-1B critics.
In the video, a person identified as Lawrence Lebowitz, an attorney at Cohen & Grigsby, explains a method that can be used for hiring foreign workers under the U.S. government's Program Electronic Review Management process. PERM stipulates requirements for placing help wanted ads to fill job vacancies, with the intent of either hiring U.S. workers or showing that no qualified Americans are available.
However, Lebowitz focuses only on the latter in the video. "Our goal is clearly not to find a qualified and interested U.S. worker," he said. "And that, in a sense, sounds funny, but it's what we are trying to do here."
He added that while "complying with the law fully," the objective is to get a prospective foreign worker a green card "and to get through the labor certification process." He and other panelists go on to explain the ways in which employers can legally reject applicants to meet that goal.
Lebowitz didn't answer calls to his office seeking comment on the matter, and a receptionist at Cohen & Grigsby referred calls to a public relations representative, who didn't return them.
The Programmers Guild has added subtitled commentary and some music to the video to help dramatize key points. For instance, in one subtitle, the text asks: "If there were a 'shortage of U.S. workers,' would employers need to hire these immigration attorneys to help them avoid finding qualified candidates?"
But John Miano, the group's founder and treasurer, said via e-mail that he wasn't surprised by what he saw. "There is nothing new here," he wrote. "We've known this has been going on for years. There have been printed accounts in the past, but the video makes the point much better."
Miano added that he hopes people take away the message that "worker protections in the [H-1B] law are a joke. Here we see how blatant people are about getting around them."
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
- IBM CHRO Study: Working Beyond Borders Based on the key capability gaps revealed in this study, we believe organizations should focus on three critical workforce imperatives: cultivating creative leaders,...
- Onboarding 2013 - A New Look at New Hires This study of 230 organizations, conducted in January and February 2013, will explore the best practices organizations use to leverage world-class technology to...
- Building a Smarter Workforce in Today's Global Economy In this report, we discuss how new approaches and a new science of human resources have emerged to develop a "smarter workforce," resetting...
- Recruit, Hire and Onboard the Right Talent In this report, we discuss strategies for how organizations can perform optimally and compete successfully by hiring and onboarding the best talent the...
- Creating a Smarter Workforce for Market Leadership IBM executives, clients and industry experts will discuss how leading companies are building a smarter workforce and why it is key to an...
- Secrets to Corporate Communications Success Watch this 60-minute webinar to discover how how other companies are successfully creating advocates out of their employees and help them to better... All Staff Management White Papers | Webcasts