• Immigration bill includes benefits to some industries

    The immigration reform bill currently being debated on Capitol Hill, in addition to giving immigrants a pathway to citizenship, strengthening border security, and requiring better enforcement of laws which aim to prevent the hiring of undocumented workers, also includes benefits for specific industries and groups.

  • Senate panel reaches compromise on foreign workers

    The Senate Judiciary Committee reached a compromise which would make it much easier for American tech companies to hire foreign workers. Most U.S. high-tech companies would not be required to offer tech jobs to Americans before they are able to hire foreign workers. The only companies required to do so are companies which depend on foreign workers for more than 15 percent of their workforce.

  • Senator Hatch champions tech industry’s priorities in immigration reform

    As the Senate Judiciary Committee continues to consider the bipartisan immigration reform bill, both supporters and opponents of the bill agree that one senator has emerged as a key voice on the issue: the 79-year old Orrin Hatch (R-Utah). Hatch has emerged as a champion of the U.S. technology industry, and while he supports the broad goal of immigration reform, he insists on shaping the legislation so it addresses the priorities and preferences of the tech industry, priorities and preferences which he sees as essential not only for the health of the industry, but for the health of the U.S. economy more generally.

  • Silicon Valley plans an immigration “virtual march” on Washington

    A bi-costal push for federal immigration reform geared toward highly skilled foreign workers has Silicon Valley business leaders planning a “virtual march on Washington.”

  • Courts largely ignore immigration status in lawsuits: study

    When a person living in the United States without legal permission or suspected of doing so is involved in a work-related lawsuit, most courts disregard their immigration status when determining remedies, says a study from an expert in labor relations.

  • Labor organizes campaign to push GOP to support path to citizenship

    Immigration advocates have launched a campaign to push Republicans to agree to legislation which provides a path to citizenship for more than eleven million illegal immigrants currently living in the United States. Several GOP leaders have called for granting illegal immigrants legal status in the United States, but not a path to U.S. citizenship. The AFL-CIO, which is helping in organizing and funding this latest campaign, says that allowing millions of undocumented residents to remain in the country without full citizenship would only perpetuate a caste system which will drag down wages and health benefits for all workers.

  • Labor unions join campaign for immigration reform

    The immigration reform debate continues to grab the headlines, and labor unions are now entering the ring,  hoping that organizing immigrant workers can boost the unions’ shrinking ranks.

  • U.S. tech companies hope visa reform for high-skilled immigrants is near

    U.S. technology companies hope that what appears to be a more bi-partisan approach to immigration reform will not overlook the need to address the issue of high-skilled immigrants. The current number for H-1B visas fir skilled immigrants is 65,000 a year. “A 65,000 starting point is just not feasible for this economy. That’s the same number we started with in 1990, when the economy was one-third the size it is today,” say a high-tech industry representative.

  • Lawmakers propose bill which would increase visas for highly skilled immigrants

    Four senators plan to introduce a more narrowly tailored immigration reform bill which focuses on increasing the number of temporary visas available for highly skilled immigrants. The bill would also free up green cards so more of these highly skilled immigrants could settle in the United States and eventually become citizens.

  • Naturalized security threats retain their U.S. citizenship

    There is a surprising number of naturalized citizens in the United States who have been charged and convicted of serious national security crimes — including terrorism, espionage, and theft of sensitive information and technology — in the last several years. A new study compares the relative ease with which aliens naturalize with the difficulty in stripping them of citizenship, even when they prove to be national security threats who have gamed the system.

  • Advocates of immigration reform eye Canada’s guest worker program as a model

    When many Mexicans head north for seasonal work, they no longer have to smuggle their way through the U.S.–Mexican border; now they can hop a fight to Canada; in a government-to-government deal between Mexico and Canada, almost 16,000 temporary Mexican workers are able to earn good wages in Canada as part of a guest worker program; as discussions about immigration reform in the United States continue, some eye the Canadian guest worker program as a model to be emulated

  • New Georgia immigration bill makes state health professionals feel the pain

    Starting in January 2012, a Georgia House bill required health employees to prove their citizenship or legal residency when they apply for or renew a professional license; the bill has licensing administrators tied up in knots as understaffed offices cannot keep up with the deluge of new paperwork and increased responsibility

  • Employers in a bind over the administration’s deferred deportation executive order

    The administration’s 15 June executive order defers deportation action against 1.2 million illegal immigrants who meet certain criteria; those who apply for the 2-year deferment should prove, for example, that they have lived in the United States for at least five years, and one way to do so would be a job verification from their employers; employers, however, are concerned that those employers who agree to these requests may be acknowledging that they knowingly hired an illegal immigrant, a violation of federal law

  • Immigrant entrepreneurship in U.S. has stalled for the first time in decades

    New study finds that high-tech, immigrant-founded startups – a critical source of fuel for the U.S. economy — has stagnated and is on the verge of decline; the proportion of immigrant-founded companies nationwide has slipped from 25.3 percent to 24.3 percent since 2005; the drop is even more pronounced in Silicon Valley, where the percentage of immigrant-founded startups declined from 52.4 percent to 43.9 percent

  • Supreme Court hears arguments on Arizona immigration law

    The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday heard arguments about the tough Arizona immigration law, known as SB107; the case highlights a fundamental disagreements over the precise balance of power between the states and the national government; the judges appeared skeptical of the administration’s arguments; the Arizona case may occasion a redrawing by the Supreme Court of established boundaries between the federal government and the states on immigration enforcement