COVID-19 May Force Out 125,000+ H-1B Visa Holders

The COVID-19 pandemic may force more than 250,000 legal immigrants to leave the country by the end of June, according to a new analysis by the Niskanen Center, a think tank that advocates immigration reform. This could include more than 125,000 workers on the H-1B visa.

The Niskanen Center’s Jeremy Neufeld, who focuses on immigration policy, based that number on an analysis of “approved I-140 petitions and economic projections from the St. Louis Fed,” according to his research note.

“A back-of-the-envelope calculation suggests that as many as 125,000 legal immigrants already working in the United States may fall out of status and be forced to return home because of the coronavirus by the end of June,” he added. “If we included H-1B holders who may intend to become permanent residents, but who do not yet have approved immigrant petitions, the total number of would-be legal immigrants working here who may lose status and have to depart would likely more than double to over a quarter of a million.”

Neufeld acknowledges that he has no data on how many H-1B workers “have immigrant intent.” To arrive at his overall picture of COVID-19 departures, he also used three years of initial H-1B petition data, then made the same assumptions about H-1B unemployment rates as overall legal immigration.   

There are additional caveats to that number, of course. “This very rough estimate makes the simplifying assumption that unemployment among H-1B workers would be the same as for the general population, and that H-1B workers would be unable to transfer to another H-1B eligible job within the 60 days necessary to retain status,” he added.

The COVID-19 pandemic has already slowed down U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This year’s H-1B visa processing, for example, has undergone significant delays. “Beginning with the first day of filing, April 1, 2020, we will not immediately enter data for FY 2021 cap-subject petitions due to the COVID-19 pandemic and required health and safety protocols,” read the agency’s note. “Data entry and notice generation will be delayed until at least May 1, 2020.”

In addition, the long-term rate of H-1B denials remains elevated. The National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP) was kind enough to crunch the data going back several years:

Business-services and consulting firms have been hit the hardest by these denial rates. That’s heartening news to critics who feel that the H-1B visa is a tool that those companies use to onboard talent at artificially suppressed prices. Just before the COVID-19 crisis, there were signs that the rate of initial H-1B approvals (as well as approvals post-RFE) had crept up slightly; it remains to be seen whether the pandemic will change that rate—and if a number of H-1B holders will find themselves forced to leave within a quarter or two.  

For more COVID-19 content, check out the COVID-19 Jobs Resource Center.

83 Responses to “COVID-19 May Force Out 125,000+ H-1B Visa Holders”

  1. I have full confidence that corporate America will find some way to avoid paying a free market wage to Americans when cheap foreign labor can be had. Nor does the government immigration apparatus have the ability to ensure the laws of Congress are followed.

  2. 90s gone, 2000s passed by, even in 2020, should we have to wait for the H1 mess to be sorted out? Who’s going to take care of the native born – STEM college graduated – truly qualified denizens? Oh well,….!

  3. COVID-19 or Law can force H1-B out but it can happen only if Political Parties and Attorney associations etc really feel Citizens are more important than anything else.

  4. I have had trouble getting a job for years, despite stem ms phd at top schools. everwhere i interview, i sit across from an H1B foreigner in a generalist manager role. Hate em with a passion

    • Nancy

      You’re not alone. Same here. I tell all my relatives to vote for the person that will protect our jobs. It’s the only thing we can do plus write to the WhiteHouse about abolishing this much abused H1B visa program. Let’s call it “H1B-exit”

      • Guys, don’t just blame the H1’s. Its actually the management/ sr leadership etc (specially in Ind cos)..that are usually to blame. They usually are hand in glove with onsite client mgt- and try to push for low billing rates

    • Jake Surtes

      I agree with you 100%. One can only know the hideousness of the H1-B program by working at an enterprise that supports that model. American workers then become second class citizens.

    • Charlie Bozarly

      I have been walked out of companies will watching 90% Indian staff remain as a result of this legally abused “guess worker program”. Me, just an engineer with an additional law degree. Don’t forget… Americans are better, brighter, and much more resilient

      • Are you saying Americans are genetically smarter than rest of the world? They can’t be because they are the genetic amalgamation of the rest of the world. Also, American schooling system is a sham. So, what exactly makes them brighter?
        Immigrants work harder than anyone else because they have a lot to lose if they don’t. For this simple reason, no competitive society has been able to stop immigrant labor and it won’t happen in the future. But immigration and immigrants are always hated. So, nothing unusual here in all these hateful comments.

  5. Logic

    Isn’t everyone in US from somewhere? Isn’t this a land of immigrants? If there was always a policy of kicking out foreigners to help locals get jobs, would most of the people here even be here today?
    I many times feel the real issue is that many people don’t like immigration from non Christian countries. Even among Christian countries, there is a preference for immigration from white countries. No one complains about all the people immigrated here from Europe over the past 100 years causing job losses to the locals.

    • Milly

      @logic – before you continue complaining about immigration diversity why don’t you try Google? Show some of your investigative and analytic skills that should be evident in someone highly qualified to do STEM work under an H1b visa in the US, maybe? Try this – ‘US GREEN CARD ISSUANCE BY COUNTRY 2019’ . Then tell us about the “white” countries represented at the top of the list. Of the top 10 countries, which of those are European? Which are “white”?

      • Len A Paone

        Your absolutely right Nancy; I am an IT professional, and I remember those days when we were ‘Gods’ and companies took care of us. Somewhere in a 15 year period, someone decided to approve a flood of Indian workers into this country and allow them to replace American workers. I was also a military pilot who servers in many wars to protect our freedom, and six months ago, I found myself on a video Webex, in my home being sitting before a panel of six Indians, being interviewed for a job in New York city. What the fuck is that all about?

    • Nancy

      You’re absolutely flat out wrong. You can be an atheist for all I care. We had it good when companies nurtured their employees and paid for them to improve their skills. We had it good before when we paid $250.00 for a semester’s tuition. This was in the late 80’s even in the 90’s.
      It all started to go wrong after big staffing companies lobbied to bring in cheap foreign workers to take out jobs. We even had to teach these foreign workers how to do our jobs!

      Enough is enough.

      • jonnie come lateley

        China has over 250 million of its citizens in University. That is almost the size of the entire population of the US. By contrast, the US believes that only a few should have education (as evidenced by the recently high tuition rates/fees ).

        Does that sound like a country that is interested in competing on the stage of the world? In truth, it sounds like they have given up. They build more prisons (traded on the Stock Exchange) than schools. They know that they cannot compete with China (using local labor) – so – they attempt to steal it from other countries.

        The IT mess all started when those of European ancestry chose to hire their own – whether they were competent or not. Qualified people (born in the US) were not encouraged to participate (remember those prisons). Of course, there was no concern about this.

        At the job site, a problem comes up (because of the unqualified person). The manager then puts out a Req to get it fixed. An “Indian” comes in, fixes it – quickly – and there ya go. The manager then assumes that his shop will run much better with Indians at the helm.

        Now, that those of European ancestry are being treated like those who were systematically shut out, there is a problem.

        Those who complain, you KNOW that there was a time where a more qualified candidate (that did not have the right cultural background) was rejected in favor for someone one who was “more of a cultural fit”. What is taking place is simply Karma (for lack of a better word).

        There are over 2.3 million people in US Prison System today. Now – how many H1Bs are in the country now (that you complain about)? To say that ALL of these individuals would NEVER have been able to do the job (that H1Bs do now) is ludicrous.

        You should also know this: The goal of the person who did not have the “proper cultural background” was just to make money to support their family and go home. As of now, the purpose of those who hold the H1-B Visa is to replace you altogether.

        The head-hunter agencies are also in the same boat. I remember a head hunter preferring to hire someone with the H1-B only to find out she was related to a cousin that had an IT Consulting Agency of his own. Her purpose: get in, “do a good job”, then tell the manager on site that the cousin could hire people to do other jobs just as good as she – or better. While the US Consultancy got her “in”, the H1-B Consultancy is well on their way to taking over the contract.

    • Naphtaline Dia

      Really don’t mind them i am a USA citizen but i realized we are lazy not dedicated and focused to our jobs and these people with H-1B visa are hardworking and promotes diversity not hatred as i read in most comments here. Its sickening let people get their art together and love more. So annoying seeing people who should be serious say their jobs are taken and most at times they don’t want to go to school and want to be manager lol. Funny part is look at a time like this where you see foreigners taking certifications which are almost free but we don’t rather we are resting and flipping and eating burgers and guess what covid19 will be over and they will be better placed get all those jobs and you will be grumbling. Fix yourself to get a place in a “America.”

      • David Rennels

        IT always needed focused minds and the weed out courses in th 80s were set to at least 50% attrition. Now it demands more each decade as the population of IT has recently become mostly foreigners imported as in-sourced labor. My UC Irvine Java .Net certification has opened 0 doors because of the constant employer need for 3 or more years of experience; which is the number of years in the 1st round of an H1B committed service. The 60K salary requirement never once got adjusted due to the cash and carry legislative process that has provided all of this.

    • Iron Condor

      Native Americans are not immigrants. Neither are African Americans. So to your question, no, not everyone is from somewhere else…not by a longshot. A good high school history refresher would serve you well.

    • Jake Surtes

      Flawed logic. European immigrants came here throughout the early part of the 1900’s to fulfill needed roles as workers. Nowadays, H1-B scabs are here to work cheap and Toe the line.

      • RonPE

        I am a Mayflower descendant – 1620 Allerton – and my surname entered USA through Maine in 1805. I have no trouble with LEGAL immigration. I’ve had good experiences with engineers from India, Pakistan, Philippines, Cuba, etc. I know, at some point we ALL immigrated from Africa. Confession – I’m a ‘Boomer’.

        One brutal experience with Indian department head in mid 80’s. Even though I was the only licensed professional, he wanted me gone from minute one. Projects taken away and constantly insulted. Brought two of his own people in. They wouldn’t give me the time of day. After 5 months, I granted his wish and left. BTW, this guy loved to do a ‘Joe Biden’ and come up behind all the white females, massage their shoulders and complement them on their beauty!

        My ‘BS’ meter pins every time I hear there is a STEM worker shortage. I successfully retired but pursued post retirement engineering positions. I’ve responded to 142 Engineering job postings; 80% never responded; 10% at least e-mailed a decline response; 7 granted phone HR/Affirmative Action type interviews; 5 face-to-face technical interviews. ONE job offer w/ salary 13% BELOW new Engineering starting salary and two hour round trip commute. No thanks.

        My Wife’s relative with BS/MS Engineering & MBA was employed at BP/Amoco. He thought he would do post-retirement gas/oil pipeline work. No interest. A neighbor down the street relates his end days at Sprint training his replacement to get his severance package.

        In the 1970-80’s, Engineering job postings wanted 10-15-20 years experience. Today, most Engineering job postings want 0-5 years(max) experience. Many companies are relocating downtown so that their 20-something employees will never want to stay past age 30.

        If anybody steps out or is forced out of an Engineering job after age 35, good luck getting back in.

        Pure BS that outside STEM workers are needed.

        End rant.

    • RealLogic

      Tired of the uneducated myth that everyone in America is an “immigrant.” Some of us were here before the United States was formed and our ancestors actually built the country and were the first Americans born right here on this soil. We didn’t come from anywhere. We’ve been here before the country was founded and in fact built the country. We didn’t need green cards, we didn’t come through Ellis Island or slip through some border, and us nor our ancestors as far back as possible have any other country we can “go back to.” This is our country. Please go learn actual American history before spouting ignorance that the United States is a nation of immigrants. Native Americans were here before the US became a country. This was their land. African Americans were enslaved and brought to the US before it was a country and were forced to build the country and the economy on their backs before there was a US. I notice that anytime the discussion about protecting American jobs comes up this nation of immigrants straw man argument is thrown out.

      The only way big government (who also uses the H1B Visa program) and big business will stop this program is the resurgence of a true labor movement in this country. Labor unions tried to warn Americans that the deliberate destruction of the steel industry was a slippery slope that would not end with steel. And it hasn’t. Republicans crushed the labor movement in this country through a series of laws aimed at freeing big business to export American jobs overseas for cheap labor and more profits for them. It was only a normal progression to start importing foreign labor right here on American soil. The auto industry and every other industry has followed. I’m not sure why people are so surprised that the IT industry is so overrun with cheap, inept foreign labor. The entire country is overrun with foreign labor. All of these labor issues go hand in hand from the minimum wage, health care, lack of affordable college education, illegal immigration, the H1B visa program and 3rd party outsourcing. At the root of them all is CHEAP labor so that these multinationals can continue to post massive profits while keeping Americans underemployed and increasingly unemployed. Big business have illegal pipelines in place to bring foreign labor into this country and they go unchallenged because there is no labor unions anymore. Republicans claim the labor unions were all corrupted all the while setting up illegal pipelines and writing laws to create programs like this one to import cheap foreign labor. Elections have consequences. Please think real hard about not only your IT job but all jobs when you vote from now on. There are 33 MILLION Americans out of work as of today. Big business has taken a huge hit. You know they’re going to look for ways to recover those losses and I wouldn’t put it past them to look for ways to get more foreign labor instead of trying to help out of work Americans get back to work. When you vote for Republicans you are voting for cheap labor which means foreign labor. Period. So-called trickle down economics has never worked and never will. Firs they came for the steel worker and everyone was quiet. Now it is the IT worker’s turn. What jobs will actual American children have when they grow up as this trend continues?

      • nc1996

        @RealLogic: Are you asking people to vote for the Democratic party? Below are the “achievments” of the Democratic party, which is owned lock, stock, and barrel by the Catholic/Hispanic lobby:

        1) Catholic amnesty for 4 million Mexican and Central american illegals in 1986.
        2) 400,000 anchor-baby citizens borne every year in the US.
        3) 1 million visas issued for DACA illegals (no, “Dreamers”).
        4) 30 million to 60 million illegals living in the US (most of them are Catholics from Central America and Mexico).
        5) When Tim Kaine (Irish Catholic) was running for VP in 2016, he promised to legalize all illegals within the first 100 days.
        6) After Pelosi was elected speaker, in her 60 minutes interview, she wanted citizenship for DACA illegals — work permit is not sufficient for her fellow Catholic DACA illegals.
        7) Yes, vote for Joe Biden. This country will be taken over by the legalized-illegals and their descendants from Mexico and Central America and will soon become a third-world country.

        Of course, most “educated” people in this forum would direct their vitriol towards skilled workers because they are encroaching on their turf. They don’e care about poor whites and blacks whose jobs were taken by illegals for the last 30 years.

        Nick Kolakawsi (Catholic, I bet) and Dice post H1B articles not to inform the public, but use it a as clickbait for racists and religious bigots to come out and describe Indians in dehumanizing terms.

        Will Dice get away with posting anything negative about illegal aliens? No, they will be slammed as racists by the powerful Catholic/Hispanic lobby. Indians are a fair game, because they are less than 2% of the US population.

      • RonPE

        I think that was Pres. William J. Clinton(D) who signed the most favored trading nation document with China some 25 years ago, and Sam Walton(Walmart) sitting nearby. Neither party has evil exclusivity.

      • “Land” as you know it. From that same perspective, the immigrants are building the new world as they know it. They call it the land of immigrants for a reason. It will make sense to you if you stop the rant, step back, take a deep breath and re-ponder. Whatever we say or wish, immigration will continue and it is only for the betterment of the world we live in. As I conclude, when a bug can give us the scare and in a way unite all of the humanity, it is regressive for one to think about nationality from your point of view.

    • @logic I think you mean isn’t everyone’s ancestors from somewhere but that is the case for every country and frankly, this isn’t the 1700s so I’m not sure why you think that is a valid argument. No one is getting on a ship and sailing to wherever they want anymore.

      The US can’t keep taking in green card applicants nor can it support current H1-B visa workers when we are currently at 33 million people filing for unemployment. Also, just like with other countries, this country has a right to make sure current, qualified residents are employed first before allowing corporations to import labor.

      People wanted an absolute stop to the H1-B program and that is a large part of why Trump was elected and if he is re-elected, you can expect four more years of this. (I’m not a Trump fan but I do support his crackdown on H1-B. It has been abused for decades).

    • Gary Cline

      I do not think that religion is the issue. Had a consulting assignment at a health insurance company. 90% or more of the staff were H1’s. When i needed to interact with members of a project team I got zero cooperation with the H1’s whose data i needed to complete my job. At one point in a meeting i told this one guy that he could say yes, he could say no, but standing there saying nothing with this dumb ass look on his face was unacceptable. I got the impression they would not cooperate with anyone who was another contractor but not H1 visa holder.

  6. Mike Amin

    It is time we get rid of this H-1b visa and focus on our American resources. Our people are dying here and we can’t feed the neighbors when we don’t have food in our own stomach! We need to make the H-1b visa in regards to job that our local university not producing enough. Show me a data when we have millions of computer science graduate here why we will need to hire a non American? This is not rocket science and our people can be trained to do this job what we are doing by hiring non Americans. Company like Tata consultancy those foreign companies need to be banned they seek in our country and export these jobs to India. Any job can be done here we should do everything in our power to stop this outsourcing. If our people have no money and no job who will run this economy not the billionaire corporations puppies!!!’

  7. Melting pot is BS. America has been over 90% white for over 90% of its existence. Whats going on now is forced integration not voluntary association.

  8. Chuck

    COVID-19 May Force Out 125,000+ H-1B Visa Holders

    Mother nature will accomplish what our cowardly politicians refuse to do.
    You see? There is a silver lining to this pandemic.

  9. Chuck

    …the total number of would-be legal immigrants working here who may lose status and have to depart would likely more than double to over a quarter of a million.”

    If that can be accomplished for the next few years, the US tech unemployment situation will stabilize.

  10. To all of the above, you won’t get any sympathy from Dice. It seems obvious that they (Dice) are mourning the looming (possible) death of the H1B visa.

  11. Imran Khan Niazi

    H1B is biased enough. It is an open breach to the Equal Opportunity Employment code of ethics with the amount of Indians filling 9 out of 10 H1B spots in the IT industry, leaving no opportunities for capable and equally competent if not better H1B talent from Pakistan or other muslim countries simply because the H1B worker “Manager” seeks to employ or prefer to employ Hindus of their own kind. I’m sure a guest worker Manager will eliminate Muslim H1B workers in the same way an Indian company would hire a Hindu instead of a Muslim in India even if the latter is a better candidate. It is unfair for muslims in the IT workforce which don’t even account for 1% of the H1B workforce, 99% of whom are Brahmin Hindus from India who chant HAR HAR MODI and BHARAT MAATA KI JAI. Muslims often have to live under the paintbrush of “Radical Islamic terror” while Hinds walk scott free with their open support for “narendra Modi and the RSS Radical Hindu terror outfit”. Muslims pledging their allegiance to ISIS could be taken in as terror sympathizers while Hindus show open support for RSS support in offices. Yet America lets this RESIDENT EVIL thrive amongst us in plain sight in the Silicon Valley offices in particular and the rest of USA in general. I hope this breach of employment equality on the basis of religion draws to an end and Justice prevails for people from all walks of life to be given equal opportunities.

    • Per news, Pakistan is most dangerous to its own religion and to the World.
      Other Asian countries have safe place for all religions and no bias anywhere in the World as you commented. Practice peace and see the world with Peace.

  12. Swaroop Krishnakumar

    Please deport all Chinese H1bs and retain Indians only. Indians did not cause COVID-19, the Chinese did. It is unfair that Indians have to suffer. We are living in the USA peacefully and dont cause any pandemics. Thx

    • @Swaroop Krishnakumar

      No. Blaming the Chinese for COVID-19 in an attempt to save your hide is disgusting. Also, you’re not being ‘deported’ for starting COVID-19. Your VISAs are being revoked/cancelled because the US has an unemployment rate of 10%.

      How vile and despicable.

      • Swaroop Krishnakumar

        No, President Donald Trump called it the Chinese virus so obviously it is the fault of the Chinese. Indians have nothing to do with it. The chinese have to answer to the problem they caused. Thx.

  13. Maybe H1-Bs will have to train US workers the inverse of what has been reported when a number of people were laid off and they had to train H1-B to get severence.

    • Spurl

      This statement is wrong.
      “1. Speak and write English like an American. (Aussies, Brits and Canadians come closest.)”

      American English was influenced by the British, not the other way around. *sigh*

  14. It’s not about color. It’s about culture.
    1. Speak and write English like an American. (Aussies, Brits and Canadians come closest.)
    2. Come from a culture rooted in Greek/Roman/English democracy.
    3. Embrace the Christian faith that has had a huge part to play in our culture and legal system.
    4. Watch American football and baseball, not soccer and cricket.
    5. Embrace American culture. If you like your native flag and way of living, stay there.
    5. Don’t work for less than American wages.

  15. So, with all immigrants leaving the country……did all the H1B whiners got theirs IT jobs back???… or they were just crying out loud about indians getting jobs in the USA.

  16. Dave Crown

    The whole idea of H1-B is the supposed shortage of skilled workers to fill specialised jobs. With approaching 30 million unemployed I would say there is no shortage and the program should be eliminated

    • > The whole idea of H1-B is the supposed shortage of skilled workers to fill specialised jobs. With approaching 30 million unemployed I would say there is no shortage and the program should be eliminated

      and those 30 millions do not have skills what are needed… so ?

  17. David

    Indians have taken over the IT workforce of the country and this biased behavior of only employing Indians has got to stop. It’s so bad, they speak their languages during meetings, they hate the US culture, they feel everyone except them are inferior, if you are good in your job they plan to kick you out, the manager is Indian he listens to only Indians. Sadly the recruiting agencies are all Indians, they call you trying to underpay you, sometimes they try to get your information over the phone that’s identity theft, I’ve had an Indian expose how underpaid he is, making $45k working as a developer. He negotiated with the recruiting company to get that pay cut, all he wants is a better life for his family. These Indians will do whatever they wish to bring in cheap labor to fill up positions and guess what they use them as laborers even the Indians working as H1Bs know of the treacherous journey they have to go through to work in the country.

  18. Anonymous

    BS propaganda, just the opposite will happen, many more will be allowed to come on all kinds of scam visas especially from India and grab all the good jobs, even as millions of Americans sit unemployed. Yes, only in America, no other country is this stupid.

  19. oivkovic

    The IT industry has been saturated with workers from India on H1B Visas. It’s impossible to compete salary wise with these guys! Especially if you are a seasoned IT professional and US citizen with the same skill set. They will work long hours for less pay. Even on the recruiting side the majority of the IT recruiters are Indian. I too am not a fan of our current President but when it comes to curbing or stopping the H1B Visa program I tip my hat to him. Enough is enough.

  20. Deborah

    Cancelling H1B only helps American workers if we then ban American companies from exporting the jobs to other countries…. this overseas outsourcing has gone on for far too long, often with tax breaks to the companies doing it. How about PENALIZING companies who outsource to a foreign country.

  21. I am an Objectivist Libertarian by philosophical ideal… but even with that worldview, I can see that a balanced level of insularity must be applied to the free-trade among countries. The brilliance and hard work exercised in America was always with the intention of raising the living standard of the participant workers and of their posterity.
    Those who corrupt government and create legislation that makes American productivity unprofitable; and who create incentives for the use of cheap foreign labor instead of paying a fair market-driven wadge to their fellow Americans… those are the people who should be identified for the common man to see, and then shunned and removed of their power. The sad fact is that the average man does not possess the mental fortitude to understand what has (and is) happening to him. They believe the problem to be with free-enterprise and capitalism, when the problem actually originates with a few treasonous dogs and an out of control government that enables them.
    The H1-b system should not exist; we do not need it. It has been abused to the point of absurdity by treasonous politically motivated scum. They do not use cheap labor to lower costs; they use it as a weapon to destroy the middle class. That creates an easily controlled two-tier society. That is the truth.

  22. Alan Grimes

    Yes, we must make sure all IT departments are staffed only by indians on visas for the sake of diversity so that Americans (I’m 42) can’t start families, can’t have children, and thus go extinct!

  23. I am an Indian working very well in India. I truly support abolishing of this H1B visa. I would have been angry as well if some foreigner would have taken my job. Most of these engineers are third grade IT products from C grade Indian colleges , who end up working for lower wages in America. They have zero contribution towards Indian society as well , as most of them dream of landing a job in USA. TRUMP should simply have a system like UAE where if u have job or an employe u can extend your visa every year and stop this Green Card thing at the earliest.

  24. I’m failing to see any problem here. Millions of Americans are out of work and foreign labor, that’s not needed now, is being sent home.

    Shouldn’t ALL of the H1b’s be sent back to their countries?

  25. I worked with a team of them. They are anti-American, almost always leveraging anti-white sentiments, they work as a closed team, they have fake resumes, and fake degrees. They can hardly write a sentence, they don’t communicate worth a damn, and they play really below the belt office politics. They are of the worst, most self-entitled, privileged opportunists that American could ever displace its workforce with. I blame the US executives, they use the migrant diaspora labor as office political fodder – they make motes of them, and they leverage other American’s into being the work-horses as they pamper the “exotic worker” and boast their social-credit’s of inclusion. It’s a mess of everyone using everyone in a spiral into the most unproductive stalled out workforce that the US has ever had. I still hold the US executive management to account – usually they hire 3 global-migrants to 1 US worker to look like they are abiding by the equal opportunity agenda… it disgusts all sensibilities.

  26. John Short

    Remembering 2008 and the years prior, I currently fear we’re (Covid-19 is) training the last bastions of employers to use remote workers, thus setting ourselves up to see more work exported like happened to the call centers of larger employers.

    We may loose .25 million souls from Covid-19 leaving fewer workers, but we may loose many times that number of jobs, transferring them overseas by those companies keen to save ten cents an hour (or more, of course.) Predatory foreign staffing companies abound throughout the world, seeing the US as their target market. Operating now with 20+ mil fewer employees “teaches” companies to get along with fewer people, and “teaching” existing US workers to do their jobs from home sets themselves up against world-wide competition, as normality returns. It’s not just tech, but every administrative position that’s at stake this time. It’s not just internal H1B, but every form of job loss/transference that’s at stake this time.

    I fear what we’ll look like with 5-10 million long-term unemployed. Yes we need to protect our local workers – in every way possible.

  27. holder

    Sure, why not! I have been on H1B visa in this country for over 8 years. My net worth is well over half a million $ and I don’t care if I have to go back at this point. I’ll better start a business in my home country and settle for good. However, the company I’m working for has moved over 200 jobs overseas in 2018 and 2019, due to the immigration limitations. In the end, companies will somehow find a way to get out of this immigration mess.

  28. The H1b visa is specifically classified for temporary non-immigrant guest workers to fill specific human resources shortages. Those workers are not immigrants. The visa has been widely abused from its original intent by staffing agencies. It seems unlikely that in the current situation shortages for talent still exist. At the minimum the issuance of new H1b visas should be stopped. Going forward the H1b visa needs to be reformed to a true one year temporary visa without renewal option and companies should be required to hire an additional US citizen to be trained as a replacement for the H1b worker. Visa for real extraordinary specialist should exist in limited amounts and go to those with rare Nobel price level expertise. Those workers should be required be paid at a large premium above market wage and fast tracked to immigrant green cards.

  29. Scott Lee

    I call this a great first step in allowing opportunity to native STEM graduates who often as not cannot find good entry level work as opposed to cheap foreign labor.

    • I don’t think US will support US Citizens. They never cancelled Spouse Employment Authorization. Look at a new bill to give 40K Green Cards to Doctors and Nurses for helping US during COVID-19 and planning bring more visa holders to help healthcare. When they going to help new grads to get into health care?

  30. A common fellow American

    I read through many comments. I understand people are stressed out during this very difficult situation. I totally understand that Government is failing to create sufficient opportunities for Americans. However, we need to take a look at the bigger picture when we speak about the H1-B program. Foreigners have helped us to strengthen our leadership in may areas particularly in technology and have helped us to create new jobs. I believe our economy could not have flourished so well without the best of the foreign brains we bring to this country. Also, look at Microsoft, Google, IBM and so on. You will see Indians at the top. They have got there with hard labor and excellence. They represent a small fraction of the labor force. I think what we need to do is to put more focus on STEM and create more trained resources. We need help from the top 1% of the richest individuals to help move the country.

    • Shaker

      I am from India and I am on a H1-B visa. I can see a lot of resentment and hatred towards Indian immigrants here. Even though hate is never the answer, I can see the views expressed by a lot of people here. H1-B is being exploited and yes by a lot of Indian companies. I came to the United States on a student visa to do my masters from a very reputed university with very selective program for the graduate program. My university is one of the best in the US and a top research university. I was collaborating with DoE and other research agencies such as NREL on cutting edge research programs. I graduated top of my class and got a job straight out of college with a very reputed company. During my masters program i participated in a lot of community outreach program such as going to schools around the LA area to speak to students about the opportunities and STEM and get them attracted to take up STEM courses. I worked in 2 American grown startups and helped with their initial start up phase. One of the companies is doing really good now. I am not trying to prove I am special but just a hard working folk who followed all the rules to come here. Applied to all different colleges and prepared my resume, statement of purpose, prepared for GRE. I took out a massive education loan (6 figures) to pay for the private university I was going to study at.

      However, seeing as how I was now a product of the American education system, i was still placed in H1-B lottery system as other applicants. My lottery did not get picked up first time and had to wait for second opportunity. I was given the salary that was H1-B starting cap salary that is ridiculously low for my qualifications and unique skill sets. I am not complaining but agreeing with almost everyone here that the H1-B system is designed to serve big corporations with a cheap source of labor. They do no care about american workers or the few skilled workers from outside that america might need to ensure it stays competitive. I am not in the IT sector, I am in the energy sector. My company employs mostly american citizens and augments them with a few people from outside. I have a Professional Engineering License in California. I plan to go back to India after a few years once I have gained some experience.

  31. Foobar

    Capitalism is brutal. Yes it’s not right that software industry would prefer to bring in an h1b vs an equally qualified candidate who is US citizen but I’m sick of hearing this racist dialogue on both sides. Americans are lazy or Indians are dirty or Chinese bring covid. List goes on. Not right. People if you want to blame anyone blame these big corporations that have insatiable appetite for cheap labor. It’s a free market economy. We don’t live in Cuba where the government guarantees everyone a job. Even if they were to shutdown h1b altogether most of these big software companies will just end up pushing a lot of this development work overseas. Government from their side can at least put some requirements on the big contracts they award to private sector that mandate a certain percentage of the engineers on that project are citizens. Remember that big contract that pentagon awarded to MS (JEDI)? That would be a good place to start. I also agree that this is not a Democrat vs Republicans thing but on the balance Republican party has always been heavily pro business and strongly anti labor. So when it comes to decisions that favor of boosting corporate profits vs protecting workers it’s almost always the former that wins out

  32. Keith

    The H1B visa program should be abolished on simple logical terms.
    Prior to it’s existence when there was a shortage in this area, Americans would enroll in colleges and fill those jobs. Prior to the H1B visa was there anything America was deficient in?
    And I see figures stating IBM pays software engineers over a 100k. Was not the cap supposed to be less than $60k.
    Finally, labor done over the internet is a commodity just like automobiles and agriculture and should be taxed the same. Impose a high tariff for each billable hour of 200% and watch the multinationals cave in.

  33. Wow. Such great hatred against Indians.
    Some of the most important points are conveniently being ignored and/or rejected.

    I would like to get some facts right to those who might not be aware or choose to ignore:
    1. There are several reasons why companies prefer to hire an Indian techy. Firstly, they work hard and DO NOT take things (the job) for granted. Their productivity is among the highest in any given setting, with good levels of dedication (sometimes at the expense of personal time).
    2. The above comes at a relatively lower cost too. Why would a company pay more to hire local, and often get a comparatively degraded contribution? It is obvious that one always chooses the best VFM. Isn’t it how we operate in our personal life?
    3. It is not/never easy for an Indian to get a job in the American Market; no matter how good he/she is. The fact that they are able to compete on a highly competitive platform, prove their worthiness to get the job should be appreciated instead of throwing tantrums or hate! Things don’t turn smooth once the job is earned, they should continue to perform well and set high standards to retain their positions.
    4. This is not how the local workforce operates. They are much more relaxed, often with a laidback attitude and hence lesser productivity in most cases. I have personally seen many who login late and logout early at work – with leisure in between. I understand that this is ideal and acceptable for a good WLB. However, this rarely happens with an Indian. The companies know this well. They know that they will get more for their penny if an Indian is hired and why not?
    5. A country should never turn an opportunist. Indians always played a major role (and continuing) to help the USA lead in IT. Now that it has reached a point – one cannot ignore that which has caused success and instead, start blaming some ill facts.
    6. If a local feels he/she is talented, I say only this: Compete to win, not complain! Work hard, be a VFM, be productive, be proactive and most certainly, don’t take things for granted just because you feel that you deserved it!
    7. Remember: The concept of wishing for one’s absence for one’s own existence is cowardly. Only the weak seek such ways!

    • The only reason the American companies hire Indian tech is because the low level hiring managers of Indian origin from those companies pretend that they cannot find anybody else.

      It is time for those racist Indian hiring managers to go back to their countries.

  34. I have sat across the table from someone who didn’t even know how to unzip a folder:P. Mind you this is one of the most well known financial firms we are talking about which by the way is known to hire WHITE citizens at managerial positions to just nod their heads without having the slightest clue about what is going on, let aside the technical details or requirements for a project. I am an Asian who holds an engineering degree & has worked in her home country before coming here to do my master’s in a STEM course. So ya next time you shout at someone for taking your job, make sure you know how to work with excel sheets, ms access, SQL codes (I don’t mean copy-paste from some website you searched on google), data visualization tools( for eg-Tableau). These are just some of the BASIC skills which any Immigrant Analyst working out here needs to have. Because not everyone comes to the office to send out meeting invite emails & create ppts with copy-paste information.

  35. if they are truly the so-called “the best and the brightest” H-1Bs H1Bs then let them develop an AI that converses, interacts, assist us, example in Java alone, etc, and other technologies, that’s all they would do.. this will then augment the performance of our very own young tech talents, our old, and even our disabled tech talents.. it will attract and invite more of our older tech talents and let them come back to work in tech as coding is more fun with the AI tech assistants.. the older tech talents are loaded with lots of use cases which the AIs need be fed in learning further as AIs already have the academics of things..

  36. Magesh Patel Singh

    Us smart Indians come to American to take the good paying jobs 🙂 We play by the rules, it’s your fault you don’t send your kids to the right schools. You just mad because we take the $150,000 per year job at Apple. Even The CEO is on our side and he is American hahaha

    • peter

      if they are truly the so-called “the best and the brightest” H-1Bs H1Bs then let them develop an AI that converses, interacts, assist us, example in Java alone, etc, and other technologies, that’s all they would do.. this will then augment the performance of our very own young tech talents, our old, and even our disabled tech talents.. it will attract and invite more of our older tech talents and let them come back to work in tech as coding is more fun with the AI tech assistants.. the older tech talents are loaded with lots of use cases which the AIs need be fed in learning further as AIs already have the academics of things..