IT Reshoring News

August 12, 2020

Leading by Example: Federal Contracts Can No Longer Use H-1B Workers

A federal organization tried to replace Americans with H-1Bs. President Trump responded with a bold new executive order, pushing "Hire American" back into the spotlight.

On August 3, President Trump signed an executive order to prevent H-1B workers from working on federal contracts.

Trump order aims to curb US agencies' use of foreign workers – The Hill (8-3-20)

The order came partly from the actions of the Tennessee Valley Authority, or TVA. The TVA provides utility services to several states in the Tennessee Region. They'd recently decided to lay off dozens of American workers and replace them with foreign workers.

The TVA is a federal corporation, and so acts according to federal guidelines. The new order will require them, and all other federal organizations, to prioritize hiring U.S. citizens (including green-card holders) over foreign workers.

Statement about the order from the White House:

It would be unfair for Federal employers to replace perfectly qualified Americans with workers from other countries.

The Executive Order will require all Federal agencies to complete an internal audit and assess whether they are in compliance with the requirement that only United States citizens and nationals are appointed to the competitive service.

The Department of Labor will also finalize guidance to prevent H-1B employers from moving H-1B workers to other employers' job sites to displace American workers.

Such an order in the middle of an election year, with an unprecedented pandemic and multiple states locked down, sends a very clear signal from the President: American workers for American jobs.

However, the order does not overreach. It's limited to federal contract roles only.  A reasonable approach, as well as a good example for states and federal agencies to follow.

Will they?  We're watching.

Full Text of Executive Order (Archived)


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