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News Release
Contact: Chris McManes
Senior Public Relations Coordinator
Phone: + 1 202 530 8356
E-Mail: c.mcmanes@ieee.org
Contact: Pender M. McCarter
IEEE-USA Communications & Public Relations Director
Phone: +1 202 530 8353
E-Mail: p.mccarter@ieee.org

 

(click to enlarge)

IEEE-USA Applauds Rep. Pascrell for
Introducing H-1B Reform Legislation

WASHINGTON (21 November 2005) ó IEEE-USA applauds Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) for introducing legislation that attempts to correct some of the "serious problems" in the H-1B temporary visa program.

Rep. Pascrell's bill, H.R. 4378, the Defend the American Dream Act of 2005, introduced on 17 November, is designed to provide greater workforce protections for U.S. citizens and H-1B visa holders. It would require all employers, not just so-called "H-1B-dependent companies," to attest to
good-faith efforts to actively recruit U.S. workers for jobs employers propose to fill with H-1B workers. And it prohibits the outplacement (i.e., outsourcing, leasing or contracting) of H-1B workers by H-1B employers to other companies.

"In report after report, government investigators have found serious weaknesses and failings in the H-1B program," IEEE-USA President Gerard A. Alphonse said. "Contrary to the law's intent, the program can be used to fill any job at almost any wage, and the vast majority of employers are not
required to recruit American workers first. IEEE-USA applauds Rep. Pascrell for drafting a bill that addresses these serious problems."

In evaluating the H-1B program for the FY 2006 budget cycle, the federal Office of Management and Budget found, "The [current H-1B] statute waives a labor market test, does not require submission of supporting documentation by employers, [and] limits the Department of Laborís authority to review or question [applications]... [leaving] the program vulnerable to fraud or abuse." According to IEEE-USA, Rep. Pascrell's bill will fix these flaws and ensure that the statute aligns with the intent of the program.

The bill also seeks to strengthen prevailing wage protections for foreign workers because, as viewed by IEEE-USA, the current protections are ineffective and can be easily taken advantage of by employers seeking to pay lower wages than they would pay to comparably skilled Americans. Rep.
Pascrell highlighted the bill at a news conference held earlier today (on 21 Nov.) in Paterson, N.J.

IEEE-USA advances the public good and promotes the careers and public policy interests of the more than 220,000 engineers, scientists and allied professionals who are U.S. members of the IEEE. IEEE-USA is part of the IEEE, the world's largest technical professional society with 360,000 members in 150 countries. For more information, go to www.ieeeusa.org.

 

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Last Update:  29 September 2011
Staff Contact: Pender M. McCarter, p.mccarter@ieee.org

 

 

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