Does The H-1B Visa Loophole Take Away Jobs?

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Are American's losing Tech Jobs?

There's been a lot of controversy lately about the lack of good tech jobs. In fact, several reporters have been talking about how American corporations don't actually want to increase tech jobs in America.

Over the past few years, large corporations like Apple have been under fire for using overseas contractors to make their products. Many accuse them of exploiting the labor market by paying low wages and providing harsh working conditions. Because they can make their products at a significantly lower cost, these jobs won't be coming back to America any time soon.

However, there is another way that tech companies have been denying jobs to qualified applicants by saying that they can't find people with specific high tech skills and recruiting employees from overseas through the H-1B visa. Then, they train the person to eventually assist them when they set up a new location or plant in the employee's home country. It's one that doesn't get as much press coverage but is possibly more damaging than shipping jobs overseas. During President Obama's interactive town hall meeting on Google + recently, a woman whose husband had been laid off from Texas Instruments asked the President about the problem. Here's the quote:

"My question to you is to why does the government continue to issue and extend H-1B visas when there are tons of Americans just like my husband with no job?" she asked.
Obama offered that industry leaders have told him that there aren't enough of certain kinds of high-tech engineers in America to meet their needs. Jennifer Wedel interrupted him to explain that that answer didn't match what her husband is seeing out in the real world.
"Jennifer, can I ask what kind of engineer your husband is?"
"He's a semiconductor engineer," she told the president, who seemed genuinely surprised.
"If you send me your husband's resume, I'd be interested in finding out exactly what's happening right there," he told her. "The word we're getting is somebody in that high-tech field, that kind of engineer, should be able to find something right away. And the H-1B should be reserved only for those companies who say they cannot find somebody in that particular field."
Although I have to commend the President for offering personal help, I believe that this is a problem that is happening much more frequently than companies are willing to admit.

Have you lost a job opportunity this way? What do you think about the H-1B visas? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

By Melissa Kennedy- Melissa is a 9 year blog veteran and a freelance writer for TechCareersBlog and Nexxt. Along with helping others find the job of their dreams, she enjoys computer geekery, raising a teenager, supporting her local library, writing about herself in the third person and working on her next novel.

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