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Layoffs 2022: Indians with H1B visas struggle to find jobs, US says exploring options to help immigrants

A report reveals that hundreds of H1B holders (including Indians) in the US are struggling to find a job and immigrants are also not getting proper guidance regarding this from the companies who fired them.

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Many Indians with H1B visas are struggling to find jobs. US says it is exploring policy options to help immigrants.

In Short

  • Layoffs have majorly impacted Indians with H1B visas.
  • The people who have been laid off believe immigration support from US companies is bare minimum.
  • The USCIS agency has said that it is exploring policy options to help immigrants.

By Ankita Garg: A lot of big tech companies are sacking thousands of employees across divisions because of which LinkedIn is seeing a big surge in engagement as many people are posting for job appeals. While everyone who has been laid off is having a tough time finding a new job, the most impacted people are the ones who are on temporary H1B visas.

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Now, a report from Bloomberg reveals that hundreds of immigrants in the US are struggling to find a job and they are also not getting proper guidance regarding this from the companies who fired them. The cited source says that firms like Amazon, Meta, Stripe, Twitter and Salesforce have sponsored close to 45,000 H1B visa holders in the past three years, but the abandoned employees are now not getting enough support.

H1B visa holders or we can say immigrants, who get a job in the US, are not allowed to stay back in the country for more than 60 days if they lose a job. The H1B visa workers will have to find a new job in about 60 days or they will have to leave the country. The visas are typically issued for three years, and they can get extended depending on the employment. The report says that at least 350 immigrants have been affected by the layoffs done at Twitter and Facebook’s parent company Meta.

People are struggling to find a good jobs because many tech companies are laying off and most of them have also put a halt on hiring for the coming months. There are thousands of job post appeals on platforms like LinkedIn and crowdsourced spreadsheets, as well as referrals on various social networks.

The report claims that layoffs had a major impact on Indians who are living in the US with temporary visas. A H1B holder from India, who joined Meta earlier this year, has been looking for a job for some time now. He says it is not easy to get a job at such big tech companies and that it takes months to prepare for it. So, it is pretty difficult to find one in just about 60 days, that too at a time when companies are cutting jobs on a wide scale.

“It’s hard to tell yourself that even after 15 years being properly documented you still might not have a way to stay. The path to residency is broken,” he said. Another Indian, Aditya Tawde, believes that immigration support from US companies is “bare minimum.” He was laid off by TripAdvisor sometime back, and he went for 25 interviews, after which he got a job at LinkedIn just two weeks before the end date of his visa.

Now that a lot of H1B holders are finding it hard to look for a job in a limited period of time, a spokesperson for the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) agency has announced that it is “exploring policy options to address challenges faced by immigrant communities and is committed to increasing access to immigration benefits.” It remains to be seen how fast they will be able to work on this, considering immigrants don’t have much time.