Immigration Blog

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IBM Hits a New Low

When I think of H-1B abuse, I first think of IBM. For the past decade, IBM has been transforming itself into an H-1B bodyshop and now has more employees in India than in the United States.
Topics: IBM and H-1Bs

Will Guantanamo's Terrorist Detention Center Reopen for Business?

A few days ago, the attorney general of the United States and his deputy visited the terrorist detention center embedded within the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. According to a Department of Justice (DOJ) spokesman, they went to familiarize themselves with the operation there — now down to just a ghost of its former self, after multiple releases during the Obama administration.

Thoughts on Moving Consular Affairs to Homeland Security

A few days ago, a Reuters article published in various media outlets noted that the consulting firm Insigniam had conducted a review and issued a report for Secretary of State Tillerson suggesting that Department of State functions having to do with issuance of visas and passports should be transferred from the Department of State (DOS) to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The recommendation was made after surveying thousands of employees online.

Millions of Immigrants Became Citizens Without Basic English Literacy

Between 2012 and 2014, the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) administered a test of English literacy to over 8,000 American adults. The results have been revealing. Using scores from the PIAAC test, my CIS Backgrounder from last month showed that the magnitude and persistence of low English literacy among immigrants is a serious concern, and that immigrants' subjective assessments of their English ability tend to understate the problem.

Wage Data Shows No Labor Shortage in H-2B Occupations

The Department of Homeland Security is considering an increase in the number of H-2B visa holders allowed into the country. The primary argument for doing so is that there are not enough workers for seasonal jobs that require modest skill levels. If such workers really were in short supply, wages should be rising rapidly in these occupations as employers struggle to recruit new workers or retain the ones they already have. In economics, the price of anything — steel, wheat, or workers — rises if demand outstrips supply and, of course, the price of workers is primarily wages.

DHS Should Discourage H-1B Hiring by Its Contractors

If the Trump administration is really interested in preserving good jobs for U.S. residents (citizens and green card holders), it should push its contractors to avoid hiring H-1Bs. And the Department of Homeland Security should lead the way.

This thought struck me as I was reading another one of those articles about how DHS is buying technology (belatedly) that would allow us to keep track of arriving and departing aliens. That's a task that Fiji — little Fiji — accomplished more than 30 years ago, a subject to which I will return.

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