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(47,953 posts)
Fri Feb 26, 2016, 07:49 PM Feb 2016

The phony STEM shortage and the scandal of engineering visas -- will Congress ever act? [View all]

Leo Perrero had worked for the Walt Disney Co. in Orlando for more than 10 years, helping to run the point-of-sale systems at Walt Disney World and its other local parks, until late 2014. That's when he learned that his job, like 300 others, was going to be turned over to a foreign worker within 90 days, during which time he was expected to train his replacement.

"My co-workers and I felt extremely betrayed by Disney," he told a Senate subcommittee Thursday. "They were going to simply cast us aside for their financial benefit.... I followed my dream of having a career in technology to have my very same desk, chair and computer all taken over by a foreign worker who was just flown in to America weeks before."Perrero's story is becoming woefully familiar -- in fact, several congressional committees have been hearing testimony like it for more than a year. It's the story of how a visa program designed to allow high-tech companies to find foreign workers with advanced degrees and unique skills has been subverted by industries using it to replace American journeyman technology workers with lower-paid workers imported from overseas.

A year ago, the wholesale firing of IT teams at Disney, Southern California Edison, and other tech-dependent companies and their replacement by offshore workers with so-called H-1B visas caused a national scandal. We exposed this loophole at the time, and followed up by showing how Congress connived in the visa subterfuge.



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