Making Government put American Workers before Big Business
May 21, 2015
(Washington, D.C.) – Today, Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) counsel John Miano argued in D.C. District Court that a new H-4 visa Rule, which purports to grant work permits to spouses of so-called “high-tech” H-1B guest workers, should be enjoined until a full trial on the merits can take place. IRLI wants the Rule halted before next week when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) plans to begin doling out work permits to, in DHS’s own estimates, 179,600 H-4 visa-holders and a further 55,000 every year going forward. Using similar reasoning behind Texas’s injunction against the President’s DACA and DAPA programs, IRLI argued that freezing the program now would mean the court could avoid the nearly impossible feat of taking back thousands of work permits in the future should it decide to rule against DHS.
IRLI’s client, Save Jobs USA, is made up of former employees of Southern California Edison, a publicly-traded corporate utility that drew criticism from bipartisan legislators in Congress when it displaced 500 of its American employees after forcing them to train their cheaper foreign replacements. The case, Save Jobs USA v. USDHS (Civil Action No. 1:15-cv-00615), could have major implications for users of H-1B visas, such as the trillion-dollar tech industry, as the Rule was specifically promulgated to attract and retain H-1B guest-workers. The case could also have major implications for the President’s DAPA and DACA programs as it deals directly with DHS’s assertion that the President has unlimited authority to hand out work permits to whomever he wants.
Dale L. Wilcox, IRLI’s Executive Director, commented, “Just as in Texas’s fight against DACA and DAPA, the government’s attorneys argued today that President Obama can issue work permits to anyone he likes, despite clear language in the INA stipulating who can and cannot work in this country. If the court agrees with the President’s unprecedented claim, this will subvert our carefully crafted immigration laws and render Congress’s role meaningless. Wilcox continued, “Our immigration laws are supposed to restrain corporations from manipulating the labor market in order to collapse wages and displace American workers. Public policy is supposed to be set by the people, not corporations, and it’s supposed to benefit Americans, not foreigners.”