Military Construction and Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2016by Representative Gene Green
Posted on 2015-12-17
in the house of representatives
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Mr. GENE GREEN of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to the H-
2B riders included in the FY2016 Appropriations Omnibus. These
provisions, which were included without debate or advanced warning,
would more than triple the number of H-2B foreign worker visas
available for the coming year, negatively impacting working families in
districts like my own in Houston and Harris County, Texas.
The H-2B Program was created by Congress to provide temporary, nonagricultural workers for American companies when there were no qualified American workers available to fill a position. The Program, unfortunately, is not working as intended. Instead, it is being used by some employers to hire cheaper, foreign workers, leaving too many highly-skilled American workers out of a job.
Mr. Speaker, this is simply wrong and a terrible holiday surprise for the thousands of working families in our country who will be left out of a job next year by the expansion of the H-2B Program. These anti- worker provisions in this legislation will degrade wages and conditions for workers in hazardous industries and gut standards that ensure that U.S. workers can fairly compete for jobs.
I call on my colleagues to join me to protect American workers from unfair foreign worker competition and eliminate the expansion of the H- 2B Program.