The Migration Policy Institute has released a new report on H-1B visas with conclusions that are rather surprising given its (left-wing, pro-immigration) source. [Evolution of the H-1B: Latest Trends in a Program on the Brink of Reform ,
By Sarah Pierce and Julia Gelatt, March 2018]
The report itself [PDF
] has little new information.
However, this information has been available previously from Brookings here
and the Center for Immigration Studies here.
One item in the report that has attracted much attention is that the number of visas awarded each year is four times the cap.[ Study: Number of High-Skilled Immigration Visas Quadruples Legal Cap
, Getty Images BY: Charles Fain Lehman, Washington Free Beacon, March 28, 2018 ]
This is not really news and it would behoove patriots fighting for American workers not to throw this number around.
If we look at visa for new arrivals, there are around 120,000 to 130,000 visas approved each year. The H-1B quotas are set at 85,000 so roughly about one-third of these visas are outside the cap.
You can also make an H-1B petition to extend the visa for a second term of three years or to transfer employers. These petitions do not count under the quota. The quadrupling figure includes those petitions. If you think if an H-1B visa as a 6-year visa, these figures do not mean very much.
The real surprise in the Migration Policy Institute report is in report’s conclusion:
Data on employers making heavy use of the program suggest that some employers are not using the H-1B visa to hire the best and brightest workers, and may instead be filling mid-level technology jobs. As a result of this and some high-profile cases of H-1B workers being hired explicitly to replace U.S. workers, the program has come under increasing criticism.
That is a striking admission given the report’s source.