Wilner & O'Reilly, APLC
One Practice. One Focus. One Passion: Immigration Law.

Immigration reform interlaced with U.S. job market

The immigration issue, as many California residents know, is hotly debated. From the surge in children crossing the border from Central America to the immigration bills being debated in Congress, it is an area that is vastly complex. At the heart of the issue is the use of immigrants to fill both high-tech and low-wage jobs in this country.

Domestic companies are filling low-wage jobs in the U.S. with workers from other countries. Low-paying jobs such as health care aides and domestics use foreign workers to do work American workers generally do not want to do. The W-visas would allow immigrants to work in this country when a high number of vacancies in a job sector arise. Those workers could apply for permanent residency.

At the opposite end of the job spectrum, major technology companies use a different type of visa to employ immigrant tech workers. The H-1B visa is used to employ foreign workers as a workforce for tech jobs citing lack of skilled American workers. Companies such as Apple, Facebook and Netflix fill positions with workers who are willing to accept a lower salary.

The argument is that highly-skilled workers and low-skilled workers have no effect on workers in mid-range jobs. Many of these jobs have disappeared due to the troubled economy, and American workers are fighting for the lower-skilled jobs that W-visas seek to fill.

As companies bring in foreign workers to meet their needs, they face opposition from many Americans hard-pressed for jobs. Applying for visas allowing foreign workers to be employed by both American and foreign companies on American soil is complex. Employment immigration attorneys may help clients ensure that the law is followed.

Source: The Motley Fool, "U.S. Jobs Are at the Heart of Immigration Reform", Amanda Alix, July 13, 2014

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