President's Corner

January 2018 Building Opportunities for the Next Generation

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President Trump’s Executive Order Limiting H-1B Visas Must Protect U.S. Construction Workers

Photo: ABC7.com

“They can’t ship our jobs to Mexico,” construction workers like to say.  But in recent years, we’ve seen large scale construction projects dominated by foreign workers recruited by big corporations to undercut American wages and working conditions.  We’ve seen such imported workers housed in prison-like camps, earning substandard wages on petro-chemical projects in the South. 

The President explained his order at the Snap-On Tool plant in Kenosha, Wisconsin, saying H-1B visas, “should include only the most skilled and highest paid applicants and should never, ever, be used to replace American workers.”

Local 150 agrees with the President whole heartedly on this issue and hopes that it will extend to America’s construction industry as well.

The notion of a shortage of skilled construction workers in the United States is false, provided they are paid fair wages and benefits. As we saw a few weeks ago when Sprinkler Fitters 281 used our District 1 Hall in Countryside to accept applications for their apprenticeship program, there are hundreds of young people willing line up and wait all night in a blizzard to try to get one of those jobs. This is what dedicated American workers look like. They must be given opportunities to bring this spirit to the jobsite and protected from companies who’d prefer to import low-wage unskilled workers to boost their bottom lines.

 

 

             

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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