Monday, January 26, 2009
U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley told Microsoft that U.S. employees must have priority over immigrants working under visa programs in a round of job cuts announced Thursday. Grassley asked Ballmer how many of the jobs cut will include those with H-1B visas or other immigrant worker in a letter last week.
The Seattle Times quotes Cletus Weber, a name partner in the law firm Peng & Weber, as saying that determining layoffs by nationality or immigration status could violate anti-discrimination laws. "I know of no immigration law that would require Microsoft or any other U.S. company to lay off its lawfully employed foreign workers first," Weber wrote in an e-mail. "To the contrary, I believe arbitrarily laying off lawfully employed foreign workers first would subject these companies to potential legal liability under federal anti-discrimination laws."