Some 38% of tech employees said they were negatively affected by the suspension of H-1B visa premium processing, according to a recent report from Blind. Many tech companies rely on these visas to hire tens of thousands of employees every year. Last year, US tech companies occupied four of the top 10 employers who approved H-1B visa applicants, the report found.
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H-1B work visas are those that are meant to help fill specialty occupations—typically those requiring technical skills or advanced degrees. For the past couple years, President Donald Trump has fought to eliminate or reduce access to H-1B visas, as he has said he believes they are taking tech jobs away from American citizens.
Recently, the United States Citizen and Immigration services (USCIS) extended its previously announced temporary suspension of premium processing for H-1B petitions until February of 2019. The premium processing program is intended to shorten H-1B visa petition processing time from the usual six months to only 15 days, for an extra fee. Not only does the suspension prevent new H-1B applicants from receiving their visas faster, but it may delay current visa holders applying for renewal or those attempting to switch jobs, the report said.
The report surveyed more than 10,000 tech workers on how they have been affected by the suspension. When asked "Have you been negatively affected by the suspension of H1B premium processing?", 38% said yes, 17% said no, and 44% said the visa didn't apply to them.
By examining companies with at least 100 employee responses, the report identified the following top 10 tech companies as having the most workers negatively affected by the suspension:
- eBay (55%)
- PayPal (51%%)
- Amazon (45%)
- Uber (44%)
- Expedia Group (43%)
- Apple (43%)
- Cisco (42%)
- Oracle (38%)
- LinkedIn (38%)
- VMware (37%)
Check out this TechRepublic article to learn more about H-1B visas and their impact on the tech community.
The big takeaways for tech leaders:
- Some 38% of tech workers reported being negatively affected by the recent extension to the suspension of H-1B premium processing. — Blind, 2019
- Major tech companies including eBay, PayPal, Amazon, and Uber have the most employees who said they face negative repercussions as a result of the suspension. — Blind, 2019
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Macy Bayern has nothing to disclose. She does not hold investments in the technology companies she covers.
Macy Bayern is an Associate Staff Writer for TechRepublic. A recent graduate from the University of Texas at Austin's Liberal Arts Honors Program, Macy covers tech news and trends.