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NEWS
By David Zenlea and David Zenlea,Sun reporter | March 12, 2008
Patricia Loughlin, human resources director at Baltimore Washington Medical Center, has hired Moroccans who won visas in their home country's lottery. She also has had to place a Moroccan air traffic controller in an entry-level job after his training proved virtually useless in the United States, and she has turned away a Mexican couple who had paid a fortune for fake documentation. Loughlin and other professionals will share their hard-won knowledge tomorrow with representatives of small and medium-size businesses who are wrestling with the complexities of hiring foreign workers, including verifying their identities, understanding their documentation and avoiding discriminatory situations.
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BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | October 24, 2011
Forty physical and occupational therapists who came to the United States through a visa program to work in 15 states, including Maryland, were awarded a total of $134,000 in back pay in a U.S. Labor Department case, the department announced in a statement Monday. Labor Department investigators found that Jackson Therapy Partners, of Orlando, Fla., failed to pay the workers the required wages for the period between their arrival in the country and their reporting to work. The workers came to the United States from the Philippines under the H-1B visa program.
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NEWS
By Walter F. Roche Jr. and Walter F. Roche Jr.,SUN STAFF | June 5, 2002
WASHINGTON - A State Department official charged yesterday that a South Carolina firm violated federal minimum wage laws when it placed hundreds of foreign management trainees imported under the J-1 visa program in low-level jobs at hotels and resorts. Stanley S. Colvin, acting director of the bureau that oversees the visa program, told a three-member State Department panel that by the most generous estimate, American Hospitality Academy was paying its workers only $3.94 an hour, more than a dollar below the $5.15 federal minimum.
NEWS
By Ross Eisenbrey | October 24, 2011
The Obama Labor Department has established a fair and simple requirement for issuing H-2B visas: Employers must first offer jobs to U.S. workers, at the prevailing wage in their community, before they can get permission to import foreign workers. This is good news for U.S. workers, since the H-2B visa allows about 66,000 foreign workers a year to take jobs unemployed Americans could do. It's a major improvement over the Bush-era regulation under which employers could offer substantially lower wages to U.S. workers and then recruit for guest workers outside the country.
NEWS
By Doug Struck and Doug Struck,Sun Staff Correspondent | March 24, 1991
KUWAIT CITY -- The Iraqi soldiers occupying the city demanded to see the manager of the supermarket. Riad Sultan knew if he went with them he would be tortured or killed.Instead, a Palestinian worker hustled the Kuwaiti manager out the back door and presented himself to the soldiers as manager of the store. The man was taken, beaten and almost died. Said Mr. Sultan, "I owe him my life. He is my brother."But he may have to fire the Palestinian.With the country back in its control, the Kuwaiti government wants to remold it in miniature.
NEWS
By Rona Kobell and Rona Kobell,SUN REPORTER | October 18, 2007
Eastern Shore seafood businesses expressed relief yesterday that a bill to extend a visa program that has brought foreign workers here has cleared a major hurdle in Congress. The Senate voted Tuesday night to extend the visa program, known as H2B, for one year. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, a Maryland Democrat, got the provision written into a spending bill. The Senate measure must be reconciled with a House version in a conference committee. The final legislation would be sent to President Bush.
BUSINESS
By T. Shawn Taylor and T. Shawn Taylor,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | October 1, 2003
The number of new foreign workers allowed to enter the country will be sharply limited in the coming year, as Congress declined to renew a higher annual cap it set for a controversial visa program at the height of the technology boom. Known as the H1-B visa, the program allows employers to hire foreign workers with special skills they can't find among American job applicants. But today, the annual limit on new H1-B visas automatically rolled back to 65,000 - a cap set in 1990. As the economy boomed during the late 1990s, Congress raised the cap to 115,000 and eventually to 195,000 in 2000 at the request of the business community.
NEWS
By Gwyneth K. Shaw and Gwyneth K. Shaw,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | April 20, 2005
WASHINGTON - The Senate voted overwhelmingly yesterday to temporarily expand a visa program for seasonal workers from other countries - legislation that, if it becomes law, could salvage a season some Maryland seafood packers thought lost. After almost a week of pressure from Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski and a host of other lawmakers, the Senate voted 94-6 to approve the measure as part of a spending bill to send more money to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Senate is expected to approve the bill by the end of the week and then must negotiate a final version with the House.
NEWS
By Chris Guy and Chris Guy,Sun reporter | February 7, 2008
TODD POINT -- Phil Spedden is a regular on the "liars bench" next to a roaring wood stove where locals have gathered daily for nearly 60 years in John Lewis' Grocery. They gossip, swap stories, sip coffee and wrangle over politics as somebody throws another log on the fire. This year, the talk is often about the unusually lively race in Maryland's 1st Congressional District, where two state legislators are trying to oust Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest in the Republican primary. Spedden, a retired farmer, said various views can be heard about that among the wood-stove gang here in Dorchester County.
NEWS
By Rona Kobell and Chris Guy and Rona Kobell and Chris Guy,SUN STAFF | May 6, 2005
Emergency legislation allowing foreign workers to return to jobs at crab-picking houses on Maryland's Eastern Shore cleared its last major hurdle yesterday as the House of Representatives easily approved the measure, which supporters slipped into an unrelated military spending bill. The Senate is expected to send the whole bill to President Bush for his signature next week. That should start a process that will let hundreds of Mexican workers, mostly women, come back to the United States to spend the rest of the crab season working in seafood processing plants that are anxious to have them.
NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | September 15, 2011
Jack Brooks and other leaders of Maryland's seafood industry have faced the same problem for more than a decade: a shortage of seasonal foreign workers to pick out the morsels of crab meat that wind up on dinner plates across the country. But this summer, Brooks and the operators of other Eastern Shore picking houses are dealing with an entirely different challenge. Brooks has plenty of workers, but he's not sure whether he'll be able to afford to keep them. Seafood processors along the East Coast are steamed about a new Labor Department requirement that would force businesses that use foreign workers to increase their wages by as much as 50 percent.
NEWS
June 13, 2011
The most important question for Baltimore's schools as they struggle to figure out how to handle visa renewals for hundreds of Filipino teachers is whether the city still needs these workers. That may sound cold in referring to a group of educators who have devoted years of their lives and professional careers to helping Baltimore schoolchildren. Many of those who came here as temporary workers did so in the hope — and often on an at least tacit promise — that the city would help them eventually become U.S. citizens if they did a good job. But with shrinking school budgets and an economic recession that has thrown thousands of qualified permanent residents back onto the job market, the city can't afford to be sentimental — especially if it runs the risk of violating U.S. Labor Department regulations governing when foreign workers can be employed.
NEWS
April 7, 2011
Filipino teachers in Baltimore say the problem uncovered in Prince George's County, where the school district was informed it had to cover the teachers' visa fees and related expenses, applies in Baltimore as well. They are right — at least to an extent. The U.S. Department of Labor determined this week that the Prince George's County school system illegally reduced the wages of more than 1,000 foreign teachers the county hired under the H-1B visa program by requiring them to pay a total of about $4.2 million in fees that, by law, should have been covered by their employer.
NEWS
December 22, 2010
It is good news Maryland's population has grown by 480,000 ( "Maryland population grows by 480,000," Dec. 22). That's a sizeable jump and will mean more taxes for the state, more consumers to purchase goods and services and increased funding to our pension programs. However, there was no mention as to the legal status of the expanding Hispanic population. The Latinos make up about 7 percent of Maryland's population and now account for 40 percent of the state's growth since the last census was taken.
NEWS
By Liz F. Kay and Timothy B. Wheeler and Liz F. Kay and Timothy B. Wheeler,liz.kay@baltsun.com | August 7, 2009
Maryland seafood processors, desperately short of hands to pick crabmeat, are rushing to apply for visas for foreign workers after the federal Department of Homeland Security declared Thursday that 25,000 seasonal immigration permits have gone unclaimed for this year. The unexpected discovery that some of the annual allocation of 66,000 seasonal worker visas were still available was a welcome relief for the operators of Eastern Shore crab "picking houses," some of which had remained shuttered when the season started in the spring because they could not find enough help.
NEWS
By Stephanie Desmon and Stephanie Desmon,stephanie.desmon@baltsun.com | April 16, 2009
With the foreign workers who have long done the dirty work in Maryland's seafood industry held up by red tape, desperate owners of the Eastern Shore's processing plants are investigating a new source of crab pickers: state prisoners. This week, members of the Chesapeake Bay Seafood Industries Association toured facilities - the women's prison in Jessup and the prerelease unit for women in Baltimore - to see whether there is a way to have inmates do the low-paying work, potentially saving one of the state's signature industries.
NEWS
By Ross Eisenbrey | October 24, 2011
The Obama Labor Department has established a fair and simple requirement for issuing H-2B visas: Employers must first offer jobs to U.S. workers, at the prevailing wage in their community, before they can get permission to import foreign workers. This is good news for U.S. workers, since the H-2B visa allows about 66,000 foreign workers a year to take jobs unemployed Americans could do. It's a major improvement over the Bush-era regulation under which employers could offer substantially lower wages to U.S. workers and then recruit for guest workers outside the country.
NEWS
By Douglas Birch and Douglas Birch,SUN FOREIGN STAFF | April 3, 2005
GRIPKI, Russia - This is the end of the road for some of Moscow's foreign workers, the Severny Detention Center, a four-story jail in a suburb of scruffy dachas and industrial plants. Behind barred windows and locked behind 3-inch-thick doors languish about 450 inmates awaiting deportation. Many are economic refugees from Central Asia or Eastern Europe, lured by labor brokers with promises of wages 10 times what the workers could earn at home. But they arrive at one of Moscow's major construction sites only to become virtual prisoners - stripped of their passports, on the job 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week, and locked up at night in dormitories or battered trailers on the site.
NEWS
By Matthew Hay Brown and Matthew Hay Brown,matthew.brown@baltsun.com | February 6, 2009
FISHING CREEK -For nearly 20 years, this tiny watermen's village on Hoopers Island has been enlivened each spring by the arrival of several dozen Mexicans - women who bring with them tortillas and tamales, mariachi music and the hands that make the local economy go. They do the dirty work of Maryland's seafood industry, spending long days picking the premium lump meat out of the blue crab - work that the men who run the seafood processing plants that...
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | May 28, 2008
BANGKOK, Thailand - Foreign aid workers have begun reaching remote areas of Myanmar hardest hit by the May 2-3 cyclone, relief agencies said yesterday. These first admissions of foreign workers, issued over the past two days, breach the barrier erected by the government that had delayed delivery of supplies to more than a million people in the remote Irrawaddy River delta. The opening comes more than three weeks after the cyclone, which left 135,000 people dead or missing. The United Nations estimates that 1.5 million survivors deep in the Irrawaddy delta have not yet received any aid. The permissions follow an agreement announced Friday by Ban Ki Moon, the U.N. secretary-general, after a meeting in Myanmar with the leader of that nation's junta, Senior General Than Shwe.
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