President Donald Trump, whose policies have consistently (and inaccurately) cast immigrants as a group that “takes jobs and benefits away from hardworking Americans” (his most recent tweet, using this exact phrasing, went out a scant 17 hours ago), has filed a request with the Department of Labor asking permission to hire 61 foreign workers as temporary cooks and front-of-house servers at his for-profit, Palm Beach, Florida Mar-a-Lago resort.
The request for 21 cooks and 40 front-of-house employees, for an employment window of October 2018 to May 2019, is under the controversial H-2 visa for temporary workers, which allows employers to fill non-agricultural roles for which there “are not enough U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the temporary work.” (Framed another way, application for said visa suggests that the Trump Organization, which runs Mar-a-Lago and other Trump properties, believes that there are no local American citizens “able, willing, and qualified” for the seasonal cook and server jobs.)
According to Department of Labor filings, servers in that temporary role would be paid $12.68 per hour, with cooks receiving $13.31 per hour. Annual membership to Mar-a-Lago costs $14,000 per year, not counting a $200,000 initiation fee.
“Is Stephen Harper’s Temporary Foreign Worker program deeply flawed? Yes. Did Harper boost the program in order to create an underclass of workers with fewer rights than Canadian citizens? Yes. As a result, should Unifor let them be treated as disposable and let scores of hardworking TFWs be deported? Absolutely not. Many of the employers who invited them here may have been acting unethically, but the workers arrived here in good faith and have worked hard to contribute to the Canadian economy.”
Source- Fort McMurray Today
Steelworkers Welcome Decision Accepting Temporary Foreign Workers\’ Human Rights Case – Press Release – Digital Journal
It is stories like this that show “Unions Are Still Necessary” in todays Labour market. If it were not for Unions it would not just be the TFW’s employers would be trying to exploit, but the average worker could be out on a limb.