Bad Business: Mayorkas Betrays U.S. Workers With More H-2B Visas
Earlier than ever, the Biden administration is issuing an additional 64,716 nonagricultural (H-2B) work visas for the coming year. DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas says the accelerated move “ensures that American businesses can plan for their peak season labor needs.” More likely, it enables yet more abuse of foreign labor and U.S. workers.
Mayorkas didn’t mention it, but industries that employ the majority of H-2B visa holders accounted for nearly $1.8 billion in wage and hour violations during the past two decades. “This creates an environment that [exploits] migrant employees and U.S. citizens who work beside them,” an Economic Policy Institute (EPI) study reported last August.
EPI pointed to more than 180,000 violations between 2000 and 2021 across seven H-2B-heavy sectors: amusement, construction, food services, forestry, hotels and motels, janitorial services and landscaping services. In all, more than 1.6 million employees were owed back wages.
EPI’s data represented violations in the select industries, including U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, H-2B workers and workers of any other immigration status.
Sadly, untold numbers of cases are never detected, much less prosecuted. EPI notes that labor standards enforcement agencies are “starved for funding and too understaffed to adequately protect workers.”
Cheap-labor peddlers don’t care about any of this. As they lobby relentlessly for ever more foreign work visas, they turn a blind eye to millions of illegal workers who take jobs from legal U.S. residents. These mass immigration apologists crassly impugn the work ethic of Americans who decline to toil in sweatshop conditions for substandard wages and no health care.
Charles Stallworth, a railroad worker, recently told Newsweek:
“We cannot truly assess the needs of the American people while we have millions of people who are not supposed to be here. It affects all Americans, but blue-collar workers like me most of all because illegal immigrants will work for less money. It also stresses the healthcare and education systems, and it’s exacerbating the teacher shortage. True democracy means tending to the citizens of your country, no matter the demographic.”
Stallworth’s blue-collar union paycheck may not amount to a lot of dollars, but he makes eminently more sense than the bottom-feeding foreign labor grifters who are driving Americans into the poorhouse, one visa at a time.