Congressmen raise concerns over SoCal Edison replacing 500 IT workers with H1-B visa holders

in legal on (#2WZS)
Southern California Edison (SCE) is currently in the process of cutting about 500 IT workers at its Irwindale offices and replacing them with cheaper H-1B visa holders working for Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services; two India based IT outsourcing firms. SCE will save about $40,000 per worker, about $16 million a year by replacing American workers with foreigners on an H-1B visa. The layoffs began in August and are expected to be completed by the end of March.

Perhaps it was the fact that SCE is a utility and more in the public eye or perhaps SCE was too flagrant in their swap, but U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa, (R-Calif.) and U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala) have both expressed concern over the incident.

"Based on the information currently available, this appears to be an example of precisely what the H-1B visa is not intended to be: a program to simply replace American workers en masse with cheap labor from overseas," Issa said in a statement released late Friday.

A bipartisan group of Senators introduced a bill in January that would nearly double the number of H1-B guest worker visas.

D vs. R (Score: 0)

by on 2015-02-09 21:16 (#2WZV)

I've never been sure why republicans are the ones against this (maybe old fashioned protectionism?) and why the democrats are against it (maybe they really do hate America?), because it always seemed to me to be opposite of their respective platforms: the republicans always tout their business friendliness and the democrats always seem to portray themselves as the protector of the little-guy. Obviously I'm not so naive to think that party platforms and party policy are the same, but it seems like both parties are going out of their way to be hypocritical on this issue.

I'm mostly just hoping for a day when the bipartisan support for exporting American jobs is replaced by bipartisan support for encouraging businesses to stop the brain drain. First we lost manufacturing and just now starting to bring it back, and now we're exporting (and in this case semi-exporting via remittances) high-tech and service jobs. At point do we just say "let Americans compete in a fair way?"
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