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H-1b Visas

In: Business and Management

Submitted By RyanChang853
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H-1B Visas: Necessary for Growth H-1B Visas grant foreign immigrants the opportunity to be hired by US employers for their specialized skills. In 2012, the United States granted 136,000 H-1B Visas to foreign immigrants, over 50,000 more than the numerical cap. Recently, the Senate passed a bill to increase the amount of H-1B Visas. This has caused increased notoriety in the media and public and has led to a continuous hot bed of controversy. Opponents of H-1B Visas claim domestic jobs are in jeopardy and this government program is a way of depressing wages. These assertions could be no farther from the truth. Advocates of additional H-1B visas are the major high tech companies in Silicon Valley such as Facebook, Microsoft, Google, and Oracle. These companies are all in favor of raising the current yearly cap and have been publicly lobbying for this. These tech companies have highly specialized jobs that domestic workers are not fit for. By bringing in foreign immigrants with these specialized skills allows these Facebook, Google, etc. to continue their innovation and growth. The tech titans of Silicon Valley are growing at such a rapid pace, the domestic job market is unable to catch up. According to Brad Smith, Microsoft’s Chief Counselor, the economy produces 120,000 new jobs per year that require STEM (Science, Technology, Engineer, & Math) skills, but colleges are only producing 40,000 STEM graduates a year.* The shortage could cause economic slowdown for these companies. The H-1B program is there to fill in the gaps. By increasing the H-1B cap, America will be attracting the best and brightest. Innovative immigrants have always been vital to America’s growth, job creation, and global competitiveness. Foreign immigrants have founded more than half of Silicon Valley start-ups creating over 450,000 jobs and generating over $52 billion in revenue. Not only do these H-1B immigrants create jobs, they also raise overall wages in certain areas. According to a NY Times article, in cities where there are large concentration of immigrants in science and engineering, overall wages tend to go up, especially among college-educated residents, and eventually, so do housing prices.** Proponents against the H-1B program have not brought enough data to dispel the negative effects of this government program. The H-1B program was never meant to replace American workers; it is intended as a means to fill gaps in highly specialized areas of employment. In order to restore our economy, we need to do everything we can as a nation to be attractive to foreign immigrants and keep these talented outsiders in the United States by providing them H-1B visas.

* http://www.informationweek.com/tech-center/gov-cloud/microsoft-says-6000-jobs-open-wants-more/240008011
** http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/28/technology/a-bill-allowing-more-foreign-workers-stirs-a-tech-debate.html?adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1383066098-y6FxtncxTErkbl9KicoLAQ

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