After the latest crackdown on the H-1B work visa program that the Silicon Valley uses to hire foreign talent, Google has told its employees that they don’t need to worry. Trump administration is rolling out a number of policy changes that will make it more difficult for tech companies to hire workers outside of the country. The changes could also affect spouses of high-skilled immigrants who currently hold the H-1B visa as they could lose their right to work.
The Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice have promised greater scrutiny of the H-1B visa program, through which the tech companies hire high-skilled workers. However, Google is saying the changes won’t affect its employees as the company isn’t expecting any “impact to Googlers.”
In an email, Google’s HR team wrote to the company’s staff members explaining that their software engineering roles don’t fall into the fields that were mentioned in the new United States Citizenship and Immigration Services guidelines. The email adds (obtained by Recode):
“Wanted to quickly weigh in on behalf of the immigration team to let you all know that we’re following this and for now, don’t anticipate an impact to Googlers,” says the email to Google staff from an employee in human resources.
“Our software engineering roles don’t fall into the job categories included in the USCIS’s [United States Citizenship and Immigration Services] new guidance. We’ll continue to watch the H-1B visa space closely and keep Googlers updated on any changes they need to be aware of.”
President Trump has promised to take a stricter approach to immigration, which has already raised concerns in the trillion-dollar technology industry. Silicon Valley has historically relied on immigrant talent to fill key engineering roles.
However, the latest changes, while making the process lengthy and difficult, won’t make it impossible for companies to hire foreign workers. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has said the companies will have to simply prove that the position cannot be filled by an American worker and that it is “complex, specialized, or unique.”