Disney accused of misusing H-1B visa program to boot American workers

posted at 4:01 pm on January 26, 2016 by Jazz Shaw

Things are not quite so chipper in the Land of the Mouse these days. A number of workers in the Disney empire lost their jobs and they’re none too happy about it. In the current economy that’s not much of a shocker, but these folks seem to have a very specific complaint. According to the the allegations heading to court, Disney got rid of a number of American workers in order to replace them with lower cost foreign workers using the H-1B visa program to get into the country. (Orlando Sentinel)

Two former Walt Disney World tech employees filed federal lawsuits against the company Monday, accusing it and two outsourcing firms of conspiring to replace workers with less costly foreign ones using H-1B visas.

The lawsuits were filed in federal court, in the Middle District of Florida, by Leo Perrero and Dena Moore, who were among 250 Disney tech workers laid off about a year ago. The lawsuits seek class-action status.

Defendants include HCL Inc. and Cognizant Technologies.

Sara Blackwell, an attorney for the plaintiffs, said the lawsuits aim to “kick them [outsourcing companies] at their business model, to stop them from systemically abusing the immigration system.”

While these are still allegations at this point, I’m seeing some very typical language in the Disney response. Rather than saying that it never happened or that the workers were let go for cause, etc. there are terms being bandied about such as, unsustainable legal theory and a declaration that they have complied with all applicable employment laws. Such arguments may or may not wind up carrying the day in a court of law, but the layman’s translation which immediately comes to my mind is that they checked with their lawyers in advance and were pretty much assured that they could get away with it.

But particularly in the current climate of unrest, I wonder if they actually can. They’re hiring people who are coming here under the H-1B system which was designed specifically so employers could bring in the best and the brightest potential immigrants to fill jobs where the employer was unable to find a suitable candidate who is a citizen. Further, for each H-1B applicant, the employer has to affirm that, “similarly situated employees would not be adversely affected.” Is that really the case here? There were already some former employees taking them to court over similar charges and some of them had to be involved with the transition to the new workers. (Emphasis added.)

Separately, about two dozen of the Disney workers who were laid off have made complaints to the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission. Those are still under review. Those complaints allege discrimination because of nationality, race and age. Also, because some workers say they had to train their replacements to receive bonuses and severance, Blackwell has said lawsuits stemming from the EEOC complaints will also likely allege a hostile work environment.

If you’re being told that you need to train your H-1B replacements before you get your pink slip, that sounds to me like there were American workers available and that the “similarly situated workers” were most definitely affected. And what happens if the new workers don’t wind up being up to snuff and they are let go? We’ve already learned that immigrants who overstay their visas are not tracked in 99.95% of all cases, so the discharged alien employees can simply head off into the community with little fear of being pursued.

It’s time for a complete revamp of the visa system. It’s not only being abused by those seeking to come to American and stay illegally, but by employers as well. If you want to cut down on illegal immigration, start prosecuting huge outfits like Disney for things such as this.

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Comments

I want big money/special interests/lobbyist out of elections by capping donations with a completely transparent campaign finance process. If you don’t do this, you can’t break the big money cycle. Work to reduce gov bloat while also drastically reducing private sector reliance on gov subsidies. Smart entitlement reform. Allow the private sector to take the lead on many issues that the gov is trying to go alone currently. Reduce lobbyist access. Transparency. Transparency. Transparency.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:06 PM

And I would also throw in reduce the influence of government on small business. Those individual corporations that control 90% of a market or more are, as you put it, a monopoly and should be regulated.

A huge corp can hire one accountant to handle a new reg and impact their bottom line less than 0.001%. A small corp can hire an accountant and impact their bottom line 10% or more.

Turtle317 on January 26, 2016 at 5:11 PM

Welcome aboard.

jbspry on January 26, 2016 at 5:09 PM

meh, pretty much the same script Trump read from when he said he never went bankrupt, he merely used the laws to bankrupt bond funds used to finance his failed endeavors.

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:11 PM

Okay, what would be YOUR SOLUTION to solving crony capitalism?
Turtle317 on January 26, 2016 at 4:52 PM

I want big money/special interests/lobbyist out of elections by capping donations with a completely transparent campaign finance process. If you don’t do this, you can’t break the big money cycle. Work to reduce gov bloat while also drastically reducing private sector reliance on gov subsidies. Smart entitlement reform. Allow the private sector to take the lead on many issues that the gov is trying to go alone currently. Reduce lobbyist access. Transparency. Transparency. Transparency.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:06 PM

What’s your solution?

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:12 PM

Turtle317 on January 26, 2016 at 5:11 PM

Cross-post, sry.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:12 PM

I want big money/special interests/lobbyist out of elections by capping donations with a completely transparent campaign finance process. If you don’t do this, you can’t break the big money cycle. Work to reduce gov bloat while also drastically reducing private sector reliance on gov subsidies. Smart entitlement reform. Allow the private sector to take the lead on many issues that the gov is trying to go alone currently. Reduce lobbyist access. Transparency. Transparency. Transparency.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:06 PM

Obama promised transparency and fights transparency all the time.

And do you realize that Democrats benefit the most from big money special interests? Look at the list of big donors and you’ll see the top 10 are mostly unions, and the evil Koooooooooooooooooooch! bros come in around 37 or so.

And lefties typically overstate the importance of money in running a political campaign – ask Jeb Bush how much that worked out for him.

Also, you’re never going to get the money out of the legislative process as long as the government is making huge decisions that seriously affect markets and businesses. The money will always flow to where the power is.

gwelf on January 26, 2016 at 5:13 PM

I was at a gas station in Beaufort, SC and struck up a conversation with the guy at the pump next to me. I complemented his truck and the conversation eventually went to his job. He told me that he’d be out of a job as a foreman on a local farm in a few weeks as soon as he got finished training his replacement (a Honduran). He related that a few weeks earlier that a corporate guy came down and fired over 200 farm workers–all American citizens. Most of them were forced to leave immediately, but they gave him a severance package if he would stay on to train the new foreman. Apparently, there is some kind of special farm visa, but it is only available when a company has no other recourse other than hiring foreigners. So, the farms hire US citizens and then treat them like sh!t and pay them very little in hope that they will quit, so they can import some workers. At his farm, not many people left so they just blanket fired them all. He even said that American workers were also being paid less than the foreign workers, but the farms preferred foreigners because they could skirt labor rules and even charge the foreigners for a place to live. It reminds me of the old coal mine “company store.” One other thing he mentioned was that the local NAACP tried to play it as a racial thing where the white owners fired a bunch of black people, but this gentleman (he too was black) said that was BS, because it was about a 50/50 mix of blacks and whites that got canned and all the replacements were from Central America and Mexico. I felt bad for the guy and gave him my card and told him if he’d move to NC, I’d put him to work in furniture.

ReaganWasRight on January 26, 2016 at 5:15 PM

Cross-post, sry.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:12 PM

No prob. I need to go now. Thank you for actively engaging me for ideas and solutions (what little impact it may be).

Have a good evening CD.

Turtle317 on January 26, 2016 at 5:15 PM

In other words, the massive increase will just have to wait 6 months(but not really). You probably believe he just now learned about the fraud and corruption within the H1B visa program too, right?

xblade on January 26, 2016 at 4:22 PM

I have no idea when he heard about it bub. I know he reacted correctly. But you seem to believe something else. Go long on Trump biggun! he’s never switched a position…

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:16 PM

This Disney story has been in the news for around a year, and other similar stories for years before that, and Ted Cruz didn’t care until it affected Ted Cruz’s own political ambition.

FloatingRock on January 26, 2016 at 4:41 PM

Truer words were never spoken.

ebrown2 on January 26, 2016 at 5:16 PM

Obama promised transparency and fights transparency all the time.

And do you realize that Democrats benefit the most from big money special interests? Look at the list of big donors and you’ll see the top 10 are mostly unions, and the evil Koooooooooooooooooooch! bros come in around 37 or so.

And lefties typically overstate the importance of money in running a political campaign – ask Jeb Bush how much that worked out for him.

Also, you’re never going to get the money out of the legislative process as long as the government is making huge decisions that seriously affect markets and businesses. The money will always flow to where the power is.

gwelf on January 26, 2016 at 5:13 PM

Not to mention the fact that excessive regulation favors large corporations at the expense of small business entrepreneurs, it’s a form of rent-seeking in and of itself.

ebrown2 on January 26, 2016 at 5:18 PM

Obama promised transparency and fights transparency all the time.

And do you realize that Democrats benefit the most from big money special interests? Look at the list of big donors and you’ll see the top 10 are mostly unions, and the evil Koooooooooooooooooooch! bros come in around 37 or so.

And lefties typically overstate the importance of money in running a political campaign – ask Jeb Bush how much that worked out for him.

Also, you’re never going to get the money out of the legislative process as long as the government is making huge decisions that seriously affect markets and businesses. The money will always flow to where the power is.

gwelf on January 26, 2016 at 5:13 PM

Honestly, I tire of posting my beliefs and thoughts only to hear, “yeah, but YOU lefties . . . ” as if this somehow spoke to my points. I mean, maybe someday you’ll allow that I’m not in lockstep with many on the left, just as much as you’d cringe at being lumped in with the GOP position.

Also, I’m not really talking about presidential campaigns, as I’ve said before, because there’s so much focused attention that nearly anyone with a message can get noticed (or even not—remember deez nutz?)

I’m talking about something far more consequential—the lawmakers who are bought and paid for by special interest. The money dumped into these elections is out of control.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:19 PM

ReaganWasRight on January 26, 2016 at 5:15 PM

Thank you. The real life effects of our immigration system–illegal, legals, refugees, visas, whatever–are not being reported. If Trump were smart, he’d line up these stories and promise to change this.

We are being overrun, and it’s bullshite.

BuckeyeSam on January 26, 2016 at 5:20 PM

ReaganWasRight on January 26, 2016 at 5:15 PM

those workers are being trained to produce corn for the ethanol industry that provides so many jobs now we can’t cut that subsidy don’t you know (see thread from last Friday where Trumpettes defended Trump’s plan to increase ethanol subsidies so jobs)

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:20 PM

BS. Ted Cruz has been fighting to increase H1b visas by 500% for years and has only temporarily backed off, slightly, now that he’s running for president. He is still in the pocket of the globalist elite and there is little doubt that, should Ted Cruz win the presidency, he will continue to serve his K-street cronies once elected, just like the rest in DC.

This Disney story has been in the news for around a year, and other similar stories for years before that, and Ted Cruz didn’t care until it affected Ted Cruz’s own political ambition.

FloatingRock on January 26, 2016 at 4:41 PM

This.

For twenty years I’ve witnessed the abuse of the H1-B program in IT as an SAP Business Analyst.

This has probably cost me anywhere from $200,000 to $400,000 of income over that period.

All of corporate America abuses this and it needs to stop.

Ninety % of the SAP BA jobs in America can and could have been filled by American citizens.

There is really no reason to use an H1-B visa for even one SAP BA as there are plenty of people who are citizens who are very sharp and can be ramped up for the demand.

The multinationls, NR, Cruz, and the rest of the GOPe are FOR this abuse just like the Dems are for it.

Trump may do nothing in the end, but at least he has anchored his campaign to stop corporate America from f’ing the American citizen.

As long as he does, he will be the favorite because he will be perceived as caring for the middle-class and American working men and women.

It’s pretty simple.

This is the issue that was there for Walker to take up and he of course has NO CLUE what was going on.

Trump saw the abuse, saw declining real incomes, saw that we had no border, etc. and said that’s bs and I’m running to do something about it.

I have no idea if he will but he is the only one at this point who really and sincerely gives a sh*t.

KirknBurker on January 26, 2016 at 5:20 PM

Turtle317 on January 26, 2016 at 5:15 PM

You too, Turtle, enjoyed, and glad to see at lest a few points of common ground.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:21 PM

I felt bad for the guy and gave him my card and told him if he’d move to NC, I’d put him to work in furniture.

ReaganWasRight on January 26, 2016 at 5:15 PM

You deserve the incentive package that California legislated for Tesla, if they built the battery factory there. That’s the nature of cronyism.

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:21 PM

Hate to be a picker of nits, but the picture for this article is of Disneyland in Anaheim, but the mass replacement of IT workers happened at DisneyWorld in Orlando. They haven’t tried this at Team Disney Anaheim yet (though I’m sure everyone there is now waiting for that shoe to drop.

Rusty Nail on January 26, 2016 at 5:21 PM

The money dumped into these elections is out of control.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:19 PM

It certainly hasn’t did Jeb much good. Hasn’t this election deflated that argument to a large extent?

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:23 PM

This Disney story has been in the news for around a year, and other similar stories for years before that, and Ted Cruz didn’t care until it affected Ted Cruz’s own political ambition.

FloatingRock on January 26, 2016 at 4:41 PM

This particular Disney story began yesterday. doh!

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/business/os-disney-h1b-visa-lawsuit-20160125-story.html

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:25 PM

It certainly hasn’t did Jeb much good. Hasn’t this election deflated that argument to a large extent?

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:23 PM

Did you actually read what I said about Presidential versus lawmaker elections? In local election and even statewide districts without the crucible of focus that comes with the presidential campaign season, pretty nearly the ONLY thing that matters is who’s got the biggest ad budget.

There’s too much scrutiny and electorate participation (such as it is) with grassroots possibility in presidential races for that to be the be-all at that level.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:27 PM

KirknBurker on January 26, 2016 at 5:20 PM

IT, Disneyland, service industry, restaurant kitchens, agriculture, oil field, etc.

I framed custom houses in the early 80’s when that got swamped in less than a year with illegals. The rates they got were half of our long established rates. Many of us have this story. No one from either party has ever done anything about it. Only one candidate is ruthlessly hated by leadership of both parties. That’s the guy I believe will do something about it.

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:31 PM

This particular Disney story began yesterday. doh!

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:25 PM

The lawsuit is new. The mass firing and replacement by foreign workers at WDW has been in the news for many, many months now.

Rusty Nail on January 26, 2016 at 5:32 PM

Did you actually read what I said about Presidential versus lawmaker elections? In local election and even statewide districts without the crucible of focus that comes with the presidential campaign season, pretty nearly the ONLY thing that matters is who’s got the biggest ad budget.

There’s too much scrutiny and electorate participation (such as it is) with grassroots possibility in presidential races for that to be the be-all at that level.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:27 PM

I don’t necessarily agree with that either. A motivated candidate can work his district, unless it’s a massive urban one, and cover a lot of ground with just a few people. I would say your scenario applies only to Senators and Reps from very highly populated areas. It’s possible in all the rest to counter money with labor.

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:34 PM

Trump saw the abuse, saw declining real incomes, saw that we had no border, etc. and said that’s bs and I’m running to do something about it.

Trump read the same polls Cruz did and decided to run. Simple as that. Difference is Cruz starting running against the trend that led to those polls in high school. Trump began last year.

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:34 PM

This conversation I relayed above sounds very similar to this piece that I came across after trying to find out what the what the farm worker visa is called (H2 by the way). Obviously what I heard in SC was not localized or even a recent thing, since this article describes the same thing in Georgia in 2009. Disgusting.

“All you black American people, fu*k you all…just go to the office and pick up your check.”

ReaganWasRight on January 26, 2016 at 5:35 PM

This particular Disney story began yesterday. doh!

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:25 PM

The story about the lawsuit began yesterday, but the news about Disney Florida replacing all of their American IT employees with foreigners goes back about a year.

FloatingRock on January 26, 2016 at 5:35 PM

Rusty Nail on January 26, 2016 at 5:32 PM

actually it began in December 1980 when a Carter appointed judge declared the benefits afforded guest workers from the defunct Bracero program were expanded to include education and other locally financed benefits through federal diktat.

My parents had to produce a birth certificate to enroll me my local school district in the 60’s. It was not even mentioned when I enrolled my kids. Bet that happened to most posting here. Ever wonder why?

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:40 PM

This particular Disney story began yesterday. doh!

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:25 PM

http://www.computerworld.com/article/2915904/it-outsourcing/fury-rises-at-disney-over-use-of-foreign-workers.html

FloatingRock on January 26, 2016 at 5:40 PM

Isn’t the statue of Walt Disney and Ranjit Mouse?

Ward Cleaver on January 26, 2016 at 5:40 PM

It used to be, all the IT and Help Desk jobs were moved to India for the cheaper work force. Now we just import those workers to take over American jobs. Great stuff. Soon we Americans get just sit at home, get our Obama Phones, get our “free health care” and drink our Flint Michigan water while others do all the work.

Maybe then we can focus on the arts and music. Like the American Pelosi Dream.

/

Dino V on January 26, 2016 at 5:42 PM

insert American workforce with WDW for Rusty’s comment and my response

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:43 PM

I don’t necessarily agree with that either. A motivated candidate can work his district, unless it’s a massive urban one, and cover a lot of ground with just a few people. I would say your scenario applies only to Senators and Reps from very highly populated areas. It’s possible in all the rest to counter money with labor.

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:34 PM

Honest question: Why is it important to you to preserve/enable big, big money in elections, even and especially when you seek to reduce its influence on pols once elected?

And don’t tell me money = free speech. Because if that’s the case, throw in the towel for reducing special interest influence as well as reducing gov in any way—big money is in no way going to allow that reduction to occur, despite how noble you believe the cause to be.

Your position just doesn’t make sense to me.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:46 PM

Walmart is just as guilty. they have so many “H-1B” visa workers in Bentonville at this point that a new High School has had to be built and there are areas in the Bentonville called “little India” By the Locals. Its insane.

Dino V on January 26, 2016 at 5:47 PM

You want to hear something hilarious…yesterday, an SAP basis guy who used to work as an employee for us and who is Indian and was hired by my company via H1-B left our company to go work for another large corporation in another industry but same metropolis.

Now it is a year later, and he shows up and we hire him back and he told me they moved almost all the SAP and other systems to the cloud at the other company and are outsourcing to one company in India and he got ….laid off.

You can’t make this sh*t up.

KirknBurker on January 26, 2016 at 5:54 PM

so the Disney story began on 4/29/15
Trump announced his candidacy on 6/16/2015
Cruz refines his immigration stance re H1-B’s on November 13, 2015

How long ago was it that Trump admitted he hired illegals to work on the Trump tower? (Go way back.) But he never changes positions like that dastardly Cruz right?

When and why did he change them? Polls…those obvious polls.

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:56 PM

KirknBurker on January 26, 2016 at 5:54 PM

okay that’s just crazy, our laws screw everybody it appears

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:58 PM

Honest question: Why is it important to you to preserve/enable big, big money in elections, even and especially when you seek to reduce its influence on pols once elected?

And don’t tell me money = free speech. Because if that’s the case, throw in the towel for reducing special interest influence as well as reducing gov in any way—big money is in no way going to allow that reduction to occur, despite how noble you believe the cause to be.

Your position just doesn’t make sense to me.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:46 PM

That really depends on your plan. You’re just presenting this nebulous good. Getting money out of politics would be good. Who can disagree with that, but the devil is in the details, as always. Present your plan and then we’ll see how badly it violates the rights of individuals, but you’ll have to find some other dance partner, because I’ve got to run.

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:59 PM

DFCtomm on January 26, 2016 at 5:59 PM

Later, DFC.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 6:14 PM

Nice write up Jazz. You’ll be shocked to learn, I’m sure there are places we refer to as “H1 shops” for this very reason. Some places I interviewed at in the past had no US citizens working there AT ALL.

Even the managers.

They must interview citizens. That is all.

What Disney did is being repeated everywhere.

Read Norm Matloff.

the claim there are insufficient US Hi tech workers is a total SCAM.

dogsoldier on January 26, 2016 at 6:19 PM

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:10 PM

The state deciding to regulate them is what drove them to cozy up in the first place. The further away from the enumerated powers the feds get – and I am not suggesting this is a new practice because it clearly isn’t – it’s just happening faster today.

More regulations drive overhead and the need to lobby. The right to petition the government is right held by all of us, so you can’t stop lobbying. If the government isn’t interested in messing with a business, they have less reason to lobby.

Study the Microsoft early 90’s experience with not having a lobbying office in DC.

The govt, that you feel can regulate fairly, does not exist. Reduce the scope of the govt’s reach and you will automatically reduce the need to lobby them. It doesn’t work any other way.

If you are suspicious of big business – and it is more than fair to be suspicious – voting democrat is stupid, they are the party of big business. They enable it by regulating the labor market and business environment in ways only the big guys can handle. And as we all know, large employers are not job creators.

Unfortunately, increasingly the GOP is just dem light, holding out just a whiff of not expanding govt so fast. That is why the interest in Trump is so infuriating. He is the GOP’s Obama. He will just make it worse. And continue the burden on the economy and employers until recoveries from recessions never really happen. Worse than Obama’s recovery, which was the worst in history.

Zomcon JEM on January 26, 2016 at 6:22 PM

I have no idea when he heard about it bub. I know he reacted correctly. But you seem to believe something else. Go long on Trump biggun! he’s never switched a position…

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:16 PM

If Cruz just figured out that H-1Bs are undercutting US workers (or voted for TPA cloture because Mitch McConnell lied to him) he’s too dumb to be President.

bw222 on January 26, 2016 at 6:24 PM

http://www.computerworld.com/article/2915904/it-outsourcing/fury-rises-at-disney-over-use-of-foreign-workers.html

FloatingRock on January 26, 2016 at 5:40 PM

Before the Disney story broke, there were similar stories about Southern California Edison. Harley Davidson and dozens of US companies replacing US citizens with H-1Bs. One would have to be totally oblivious not to be aware of H-1B abuses in 2013.

bw222 on January 26, 2016 at 6:31 PM

Honestly, I tire of posting my beliefs and thoughts only to hear, “yeah, but YOU lefties . . . ” as if this somehow spoke to my points. I mean, maybe someday you’ll allow that I’m not in lockstep with many on the left, just as much as you’d cringe at being lumped in with the GOP position.

Also, I’m not really talking about presidential campaigns, as I’ve said before, because there’s so much focused attention that nearly anyone with a message can get noticed (or even not—remember deez nutz?)

I’m talking about something far more consequential—the lawmakers who are bought and paid for by special interest. The money dumped into these elections is out of control.

CivilDiscourse on January 26, 2016 at 5:19 PM

Weren’t you the one who started this by making the argument that it was the right generally that liked this sort of stuff?

And I’ve asked all sorts of questions you didn’t directly address – like how Sanders or lefties in general are going to really deal with “holding corporations accountable” with specific examples, etc.

Not that you need to respond but it’s a little rich for you accuse me of not addressing your points (which I tried to do – remember, you’re then one that started with “YOU righties!”) when you haven’t addressed many of mine.

My overall point is that as long as government has too much power then money will influence it.
Public choice theory has been around for a while and there’s enough evidence to conduce it’s absolutely correct – large government is it’s own self-interested group and it’s corrupt.

gwelf on January 26, 2016 at 6:40 PM

Before the Disney story broke, there were similar stories about Southern California Edison. Harley Davidson and dozens of US companies replacing US citizens with H-1Bs. One would have to be totally oblivious not to be aware of H-1B abuses in 2013.

bw222 on January 26, 2016 at 6:31 PM

As noted by others, it’s not just IT that’s impacted – and it’s not just a recent phenomenon. Finance and Insurance companies were doing this with their IT staff’s a decade and a half ago. It’s all about keeping labor costs as low as possible.

Many of the corporations that abuse the system the most as also very active in making campaign donations / having lobbyists work the politicians. One also has to wonder about the complicity of the media since for far too long things like Disney, SoCal Edison, the companies of Silicon Valley, etc just don’t get reported on.

The watchdogs for the American people aren’t the watchdogs we deserve.

I like Cruz, but one of his biggest weaknesses was his willingness to support the massive expansion of a highly abused system that victimized working Americans.

Athos on January 26, 2016 at 6:46 PM

It’s time for a complete revamp of the visa system. It’s not only being abused by those seeking to come to American and stay illegally, but by employers as well. If you want to cut down on illegal immigration, start prosecuting huge outfits like Disney for things such as this.

Jazz, I have a question for one of y’all. Would this qualify as discrimination based on nationality under our labor laws?

lineholder on January 26, 2016 at 7:13 PM

Disney is a horrible company to its workers, i heard that from a person who worked there.

SpongePuppy on January 26, 2016 at 7:23 PM

The best way to hurt disney is to cut your cable – it really is that simple. Most of the stock’s value is dependent on ESPN and therefore the cable package. Cut cable/sat completely

uatu1878 on January 26, 2016 at 7:51 PM

Does anyone in their right mind think that WALT Disney would have done this?

avi natan on January 26, 2016 at 7:52 PM

It’s a small world after all
Take your jobs,one and all
It’s for profit after all
Disney’s small small world

phadras on January 26, 2016 at 7:52 PM

Such arguments may or may not wind up carrying the day in a court of law, but the layman’s translation which immediately comes to my mind is that they checked with their lawyers in advance and were pretty much assured that they could get away with it.

Yeah, the major operative facts aren’t in dispute so they have to argue legalities. I wonder what the legal counsel arrangements were, however. You would think a corporation the size of Disney would have a huge legal department and certainly expertise in employment law. I wonder if outside counsel was brought in to advise on the H1-B stuff.

If you’re being told that you need to train your H-1B replacements before you get your pink slip, that sounds to me like there were American workers available and that the “similarly situated workers” were most definitely affected.

I’m wondering if the lawyers who advised them on the legalities were aware management was going to not only have the citizen employees they were dumping for cheaper foreign labor train their replacements, but was actually going to force them to do so in order to get severance. If they used outside counsel on to advise on the H1-B issues, that may not have gotten across. But it’s a huge error; it clearly establishes the competency and availability of American workers. It makes Disney look like the heartless crooks they are, willing to screw American workers as well as their foreign replacements to improve the bottom line and to use immoral and highly questionable if not completely illegal tactics to do it.

novaculus on January 26, 2016 at 8:41 PM

If you’re a real conservative and support Disney in any way you should get your head examined.

Mr. Arrogant on January 26, 2016 at 8:41 PM


Returning for the moment to the story, as opposed to the attempt by partisans to hijack the story to bludgeon whatever candidate they support / oppose:

Have been hearing about this (the practice) and that such a suit was coming for a while – good.

This is what happens when Government has the power to “make deals” – – its power is bent to whichever faction offers the best bribe.

If the allegations are proven, Disney should lose its butt … and will deserve to.

BD57 on January 26, 2016 at 9:08 PM

They’ve been doing this at a lot of amusement parks – including King’s Dominion and Busch Gardens.

Why in the heck are legislators supporting this crap?
(Never mind, I know the answer.)

GWB on January 26, 2016 at 9:37 PM

Before I could even get my severance package in 2001 working for a high tech company in Dallas I had to sign a waiver that I would never file a lawsuit alleging my job was outsourced to an organization outside the U.S.

As it happen, my job just went away without replacement but still, the fact that that was already a requirement in 2001 tells me the lawyers were thinking decades ahead back then.

E9RET on January 26, 2016 at 10:22 PM

Nice write up Jazz. You’ll be shocked to learn, I’m sure there are places we refer to as “H1 shops” for this very reason. Some places I interviewed at in the past had no US citizens working there AT ALL.

Even the managers.

They must interview citizens. That is all.

What Disney did is being repeated everywhere.

Read Norm Matloff.

the claim there are insufficient US Hi tech workers is a total SCAM.

dogsoldier on January 26, 2016 at 6:19 PM

As I have said before, as the H1-B moves up the ladder they only hire “there own people”. Americans need not apply. Indians are by far the most racist bunch you have ever ever seen. I work in a sea of them. More over, all of them are from the higher castes. Unbelievable but true.

wsucoug on January 27, 2016 at 12:08 AM

Does anyone in their right mind think that WALT Disney would have done this?

avi natan on January 26, 2016 at 7:52 PM

I do. Disney was a hardcore businessman. I’m guessing he would have come up with a really awesome PR campaign about how Disney Inc. embraces “multicultural diversity”. He would have himself filmed half-sitting on a desk and telling the audience how Disney was leading the way to give poor brown people from the developing world a chance to make good…who wouldn’t believe that sweet grandfatherly exterior? Maybe Jiminy Cricket would have put in an appearance and Walt would have chuckled before turning back to the camera.

Oh, I can see it quite clearly.

So was Sam Walton-he had no problem in using free market strategies in order to entice his suppliers to provide cheaper products. Thus, many factories and jobs shipped to China…if they wanted to sell their products in Wal-Mart. And by the ’90s, who in their right mind wouldn’t have? He died quite rich and quite happy with himself. On one hand, he helped screw over his country, but on the other he was indeed a brilliant businessman. I really do admire the SOB.

Jobs shmobs.

It’s all about keeping the stockholders happy and thus keeping your fat paycheck, bonuses and perqs as long as possible. Can we really blame these CEOs?

If we force companies to keep jobs here and to raise pay, we’re embracing Socialism…and we all know that will fail anyway. If we don’t, we have a worsening economy.

We can’t win this. We’re bankrupt. We’re done.

Dr. ZhivBlago on January 27, 2016 at 12:18 AM

Everyone piling on Disney, when this kind of abuse has been happening across the board for years in corporate America.

Throw the bums out!

V-rod on January 27, 2016 at 12:54 AM

Trump read the same polls Cruz did and decided to run. Simple as that. Difference is Cruz starting running against the trend that led to those polls in high school. Trump began last year.

DanMan on January 26, 2016 at 5:34 PM

Cruz is a clown who mapped out his political career since he was 18, like Mrs. Clinton.

V-rod on January 27, 2016 at 12:59 AM

I wonder how many people who are upset by this went out and saw the latest Disney-distributed version of Star Wars. Companies like this will not change as long as consumers buy their products.

MsYoung on January 27, 2016 at 7:01 AM

I knew some of the Commentariat had mentioned personal run-ins with the H1-B visa problems before, but the number of anecdotes here was very enlightening.
And people wonder why Trump …

AesopFan on January 27, 2016 at 8:18 AM

I wonder how many people who are upset by this went out and saw the latest Disney-distributed version of Star Wars. Companies like this will not change as long as consumers buy their products.

MsYoung on January 27, 2016 at 7:01 AM

#JeSuisMilo style.

AesopFan on January 27, 2016 at 8:19 AM

Companies should TRAIN American citizens. That’s how it used to be done.

If companies refuse, then the employers should whipped 20 lashes and fined.

stealthpatriot on January 27, 2016 at 8:28 AM

Does anyone in their right mind think that WALT Disney would have done this?

avi natan on January 26, 2016 at 7:52 PM

Maybe not this, but, he did oppose unionization of his employees, back in the ’30s, leading to a lot of animosity between him and the employees.

Ward Cleaver on January 27, 2016 at 9:10 AM

The Chinese invented Disney

Oil Can on January 26, 2016 at 4:30 PM

No, but they are building the best one, scheduled to open later this year.

DarkCurrent on January 27, 2016 at 11:07 AM

I am amazed that there is very little mentioned that there are two major candidates who love this program known as H-1B namely Cruz and Rubio! I am also amazed how little this has been played out during the debates. I would hammer both of them on this issue and Disney as one of them. It’s pathetic how they are talking about American workers and then stab those same people in the back with this abused horrible legislation. What a bunch of crap. And when Cruz was questioned about this a few months he said that he did not know about the “Disney” situation and have to get back on that one. Liar, he knew damn well about that it and did not want to talk about it. Pathetic and disgusting.

whsiii on January 27, 2016 at 1:16 PM

Nothing new. Nielsen (ya, the TV rating people) did the same thing couple of years ago. I saw it happen with my own eyes at their Oldsmar, FL operations, but it happened at other locations. TCS was the outsourcing firm. First it started with the operations people: HR, payroll, desktop support, then moved to infrastructure: networking, computer centers support, and finally all through out in R&D and Engineering. My last job (before I had enough and retired) was to babysit software programmers in India, feeding them HL designs and running functional tests of their output. I had a team of 5 on my subsystem. I did no coding. I could have done my part with myself and a USA based developer sitting with me.

DanielObrien42 on January 28, 2016 at 3:05 PM