The safeguards for immigrant workers in America’s largest guest-worker program are clearly deficient. Joe Biden has a clear roadmap, the legal authority, and the duty to right this wrong by taking executive action.
Every April 1, the government decides, via lottery of all methods, which employers will get new visas for the H-1B, a temporary work program that has inflicted serious harm on millions of workers over the past three decades.
The stories of two American IT workers, Hank Nguyen and Judy Konopka, are typical and instructive. Their employers, the University of California and Eversource Energy, respectively, exploited the visa program to replace them with indentured and underpaid H-1B workers, and then added insult to injury by forcing them to train their replacements before terminating them. On the flip side of the work program, software engineer Gobi Muthuperiasamy, a college-educated H-1B worker from India, was sued by his employer to prevent him from switching jobs as he searched for better pay and working conditions.