“Around March, I happened to randomly read a post online and realized that Facebook hadn’t had an employee get a PERM application through for most of the year. The bad part was finding out that I was part of the group of people affected.” Han Li (a pseudonym), a Chinese employee at Facebook, told Silicon Star People. PERM, known as Permanent Labor Certification, is the first step in applying for a green card and locking in the green card queue. Simply put, those Facebook employees who have applied for a green card or PERM in the past six months have been delayed for more than six months.
“I didn’t know about this any earlier than the average person outside of Facebook. Because neither HR nor lawyers at the company had previously spoken to me about it either.” Lihan told Silicon Star that even in his opinion, it’s possible that HR and lawyers didn’t initially realize that the December Labor Department lawsuit would affect employee visa applications and approvals so quickly.
In the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, no Facebook employees’ PERM applications have been approved since the lawsuit began last December. Without a PERM, these employees will not be able to file their next green card applications. For those who jumped to Facebook in the last six months, they will need to reapply and wait for the PERM to be approved before they can continue the previous green card application process, regardless of where they were in their previous green card application; for those who switched to green card status within the company, they will also have to face an open-ended delay and will not be able to successfully lock in their green card queue. Worst of all, the small wave of people who have held their work visas for close to six years and have yet to receive their green cards may even face the loss of their legal residency, work visas in the United States.
“The whole company counted, it is estimated that thousands of people will be affected.” In Li Han’s personal opinion, Facebook employees are being treated unfairly.
An unfair “fair” lawsuit
“This is not fair to Facebook. I think you should write about the unfair treatment of Facebook employees in this lawsuit when you write your article.” In an interview with Silicon Star People, Leehan said that although the U.S. Department of Labor had gone head-to-head with Facebook in December of last year with a hard-hitting lawsuit, “everyone thought at the time that if Trump left office, these things would be solved.” What Li Han didn’t expect was that when Trump did leave office and the once absurd-looking WeChat and TikTok bans were gradually lifted, the Department of Labor’s “unfair” lawsuit against Facebook hadn’t been dropped.
As of this writing, we have not seen any progress in the case.
The more disappointing point for Li Han is that, according to the regular operation of the U.S., when a lawsuit has no result, most of them will continue the previous treatment for the time being and will not terminate the old system early, just like the U.S. anti-immigrant organizations who have been unhappy with their spouses’ H-4 visas for years, but as long as the lawsuit has not been pronounced, the H-4 will still have a way to continue to apply for work permits. But the Department of Labor’s operation of Facebook is mind-boggling to him – just filing a lawsuit, and without any verdict, it quietly suspended the PERM application approval process for employees without a word of greeting in advance.
He told Silicon Star that one of the reasons why neither the company nor the employees had previously been aware of the matter was that even without the lawsuit, it would have taken about six months to process the PERM. So people who had been waiting for PERM approval for the past six months didn’t think much of it even if they didn’t receive any notification.
It was not until March of this year, when more and more colleagues were experiencing the same problem of no news about PERM, that someone thought to track down the data reviewed by the Labor Department and was able to break the news that the Labor Department had long stopped approving PERM applications for Facebook employees.
According to Li Han, this matter is like a black box so far – no one knows what the next step is, let alone who to go to for help and promotion.
A brief look at the lawsuit filed last December by the U.S. Department of Labor against Facebook for discriminating against U.S. workers by deliberately “designing” its hiring system to deny Americans fair access to job postings, seeking to recruit temporary visa holders and helping them obtain green cards. At the time, the DOL demanded that Facebook pay civil damages to injured U.S. workers and stop the practice. In the lawsuit, the DOL provided “evidence” that most of the 2,600 jobs posted by Facebook were demanding or required mail-in applications, making it impossible for Americans to apply.
In fact, Facebook’s process is unmistakable and in compliance with the DOL’s required process. Putting up these “seemingly difficult jobs” is a common practice of almost all U.S. companies when it comes to helping foreign workers apply for green cards. Most of these positions are created to “go through the process” and prove that the employee’s position cannot be replaced by someone else. This has been an unwritten practice since the PERM process began in 1990.
Kim Clarke, an immigration attorney at Varnum LLP, said in a press interview that the lawsuit was “unfair” to Facebook. After briefly reviewing the evidence against Facebook, she said that Facebook had done as much or more than what the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics required.
“What most Americans who support the lawsuit forget is that these green card applicants actually competed with other Americans who applied for the position and demonstrated their ability to be more qualified for the position during the interview and onboarding process,” she said. She said.
Shannon Shepherd, another immigration attorney, holds the same opinion. In her opinion, Facebook has complied with every requirement set forth by the Labor Department in the PERM process, but has still been left with an egg on its face. the PERM process is cumbersome because it also protects the jobs of Native Americans. To avoid a cumbersome process and expensive legal fees, companies are more likely to hire Americans.
Many people on the internet have complaints about Facebook HR and Recruiter – stating that the company does not follow up and update the issues raised by employees in response. Even some newcomers to Facebook said that when they asked Recruiter about the matter, Recruiter had said it was not aware of it.
“But with this kind of Labor Board litigation going on, I guess there’s not much HR and the company’s lawyers can do.” Li Han had tried contacting the company’s HR, who also only said there hadn’t been any updates yet.
In his opinion, dragging it out and waiting is the only thing that can be done at the moment.
A large number of people are involved
From March to now, in both Blind and the Acre Forum, which is a popular forum for Chinese engineers in North America, you can often see posts from Facebook employees asking what the hell is going on with the visa application. In the replies, more and more Facebook employees keep saying that they are also affected.
Later, gradually, you can see some people asking on the internet whether they should reject the offer received from Facebook, but they need to apply for PERM. According to the responses from these applicants, Facebook’s HR and Recruiter did not actively inform the risk of visa application.
On Bind, affected employees began to remind those who came after them that “if you need a visa, don’t consider Facebook in the short term.”
Lihan also didn’t expect to run into problems with his visa process when he jumped from another tech company to Facebook late last year.
“There had been a green card queue for a long time when I worked at the last company.” Lihan said his green card queue had actually arrived. If he hadn’t run into this, he could have gone to the 485 process at any time and been approved for a green card directly after that, which would have been just over a year.
John Lee said he had planned to get his green card to visit his family in China and travel to Europe. If you have a green card, the cardholder can go back to the United States without applying for a visa.
Especially in time with the seriousness of the epidemic, embassies around the world closed, visa interviews are constantly canceled, whether or not to have a green card for these engineers means whether they can return to the country, whether they can leave the country.
But now, in time for such a big case, the green card application is suddenly stuck. “The worst part is that there’s no way to know when it will be resolved.”
What weighs more heavily on Lihan’s mind is the anxiety. According to his former colleague’s experience, the process of applying for and approving green cards “will always be a mishap. Bad luck, catch some policy changes, changes and then encounter changes, dragging a 4, 5 years is also seen.
Most of the Chinese in the United States without a green card want to get it sooner, sooner the matter is resolved – after whether to change jobs, travel are more convenient, and no longer worry about once laid off to face the status of invalid situation.
“But I’m definitely not the worst kind of person.” Relative to the extensions and occasional psychological anxiety that Lee Han faces more than anything else, some within Facebook face a more brutal problem.
Fears of employees facing visa expiration
For the 20-something Chinese engineers who graduated and joined Facebook a few years ago, the problem seems even bigger – one day of procrastination without results, and their green card applications and queues are a day late. As has been the case over the past few years, the later the year of scheduling, the more green card applicants there are and the slower the processing of the backlog of cases. So for many young people who have just filed PERM, it is a “big deal” to get a “seat in the queue” for themselves.
But I’m afraid that those who are most affected are those who have held a work visa for 5 or 6 years.
In the U.S. engineers used to use the workplace social media Blind, many people expressed their concerns. Some people have been on a work visa for almost five years, but if they don’t apply for a green card, their work visa will be extended to a maximum of six years. Some Facebook employees are worried that once their work visa expires and the green card has not been applied for, they will be involved in a visa expiration. Not many people are involved in this situation, but it must be there. Han Lee told Silicon Star.
Some people have said on Blind that they have already moved to jump back to their previous companies because of this.
In Li Han’s opinion, if we delay for a while, more and more people will want to leave Facebook because of the status issue. After all, for engineers of this age, getting a green card means getting the freedom to jump ship and start a business.
For people who have just joined the job is realistic, but for another group of young engineers who have worked at Facebook for many years and will soon be promoted, it is definitely not so easy. These people have been working in the company for many years, and have a lot of seniority and projects under their belt, and many of them want to be promoted and plan their career here. Leaving the company would probably mean wasting the previous years of workplace accumulation for them.
For this group of people, as long as the PERM is not obtained for one day, they cannot lock their schedule for one day. Time is wasted simply in the matter of obtaining a green card for permanent residence.
As the U.S. has become more and more uncertain about immigration in recent years, these young people are worried that the longer they delay, the more likely they are to change, and the more difficult it will be to “get on board”.
A far-fetched end
On Blind, you can still see people’s concern about this matter every few days, but most of them just complain and reply to each other with warm and comforting messages, and almost none of them reply to the question of when the lawsuit will have a result. Now, they can only kindly remind the engineers who need to apply for visas through more channels to avoid Facebook’s Offer for the time being.
Posted by:CoinYuppie，Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/facebook-employees-suffer-from-green-card-crisis-i-realized-there-was-a-problem-with-my-green-card-application-by-reading-online-posts/
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