As the Senate Judiciary Committee prepares to review the guest-worker provisions of the Gang of Eight's amnesty bill, a national association consisting of electrical and electronics engineers is urging Congress to leave the H-1B visa quotas alone. The IEEE issued a statement on Monday to reject amendments that would further increase the number of H-1B visas issued each year and amendments that would weaken worker protections.
Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee will review Title IV of S.744, the Gang of Eight's amnesty bill. Title IV increases the number of H-1B visas issued each year from 65,000 to 110,000 per year. The bill also allows for annual increases of no more than 10,000 visas per year up to an annual maximum of 180,000 visas per year.
The IEEE says H-1B visas lead to outsourcing and the loss of engineering jobs in the United States.
"Outsourcing is damaging to US workers and the American economy. We need laws that promote US job growth, not encourage it to leave our shores," IEEE-USA president Marc Apter said.
"We encourage the Senate to maintain the high-tech provisions as written. ...Efforts to destroy the balanced compromise that went into crafting the legislation will make it more difficult to enact into law,"
The IEEE is most concerned with amendments that will be offered by Republican Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah. Sen. Hatch has several amendments that would dramatically increase the number of H-1B visas issued each year, make it easier for tech employers to petition for H-1B visas, and loosen the wage protections in the bill. The Gang of Eight is faced with a difficult choice of alienating several special interest groups if they don't approve Hatch's amendments, but also risk any chance of obtaining Sen. Hatch's vote on the legislation if they choose to oppose his amendments.
For more information, see The Economic Times.
Updated: Mon, Oct 2nd 2017 @ 3:13pm EDT