What U.S. Citizenship Gets You in STEM – The Back of the Hiring Line

Founder’s Corner

Dear First Name:

In October 2021, Facebook settled a $14 million discriminatory hiring practices lawsuit with the U.S. Department of Justice for declining to “recruit, consider or hire” qualified U.S. citizens for more than 2,000 open positions. They were found guilty of using deceptive tactics to deliberately discriminate and deny U.S. workers jobs based on their citizenship, and of favoring and reserving those jobs for H-1B employment visa holders.

Today, Facebook is again in the hotseat fighting an employment discrimination class-action lawsuit, filed on behalf of Purushothaman Rajaram, a naturalized U.S. citizen from India, who claims they did not consider him for tech jobs he’d applied for on two separate occasions even though he was a highly “experienced and skilled information technology professional.”

Rajaram alleges that in both instances, Facebook filled the positions with H-1B visa workers, so the lawsuit is best summed up as a “nation of origin discrimination” case. “Nation of origin discrimination” laws are enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), and they have a clear mandate:

“The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) makes it illegal for an employer to discriminate with respect to hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee, based upon an individual’s citizenship or immigration status.”

And while “nation of origin discrimination” laws were originally intended to protect foreigners authorized to work in the United States from being discriminated against by U.S. citizens, things have changed. Each year more and more native-born U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents get elbowed out of their jobs, in favor of foreigners working here on employment visas.

What’s most interesting and ironic about the Facebook case is that an immigrant from India — where 70% of H-1B visas workers originate — who now holds U.S. citizenship, was allegedly discriminated against by the very same immigration program that allowed him to enter the United States, and which has been used to primarily discriminate against native-born U.S. workers. And not just discriminate, but outright displace U.S. workers from their jobs – however, not before training their H-1B replacements!

Reading through the case, Rajaram tried to get a job at Facebook both directly and indirectly. The indirect route was through a labor brokering firm – the infamous Infosys. Infosys ran him through the gauntlet of five different interviews all conducted by representatives of Indian origin. They passed on him. He then applied directly to Facebook and was interviewed by two representatives of Indian origin. They too passed on his candidacy.

Time and again we’ve pointed out that as long as the H-1B visa program exists in its current form, even Indian Americans who are native-born citizens or lawful permanent residents will face the risk of being discriminated against or displaced from their tech jobs. Employers simply don’t value U.S. citizens. They think they are expensive, undeserving, and expendable.

To the H-1B worker who has either displaced a U.S. worker or received preferential hiring treatment because an employer wanted a cheaper worker they could easily exploit, I say beware. Once you obtain your employment-based Green Card, you will be just as much at risk of being displaced from your job as the U.S. tech worker you once displaced. All these immigration bills that aim to recapture Green Cards or eliminate country-cap quotas are feckless. They do nothing to reform the employment visa system that has declared “open season” on U.S. workers. Got your Green Card, you say? Well, congratulations and get yourself to the back of the hiring line!

In closing, U.S. Tech Workers is one of the few organizations that’s been successful in pushing back against predatory immigration/employment visa programs that displace U.S. workers. Since President Biden took office, we have been locked in a no holds barred fight with the cabal responsible for the enforcement of our immigration and EEOC laws.

To continue, we need your help and I ask that you do three things. Share this newsletter with at least 10 people, hit the donate button below, and when you see workplace discrimination, reach out to us!

In solidarity.

Media Hits

Goldman Sachs to Joe Biden: Import Workers to Cut Wages by $100 Billion Read More

Parsing Immigration Policy Read More

Tweet of the Week

Facebook Sued for Discriminatory H-1B Hiring Practices — by a Native of India Read More

​​​​​Columbia Fires Official for Failing to Admit Under-Qualified Foreign Students Read More

​​Politico Poll: More Americans Want Less Migration Read More