Trump is right: American jobs should be prioritized

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On Tuesday, Trump signed an executive order directing the State Department and other agencies to review the H-1B visa program.

It namely instructs the Labour, Justice and Homeland Security departments to tackle issues in the H-1B system and draw up reforms aimed at bringing the program back to its original intent: awarding visas to the most skilled and highly-paid applicants.

"We are going to defend our workers, protect our jobs and finally put America first", declared Trump at a rally in Wisconsin.

The order calls for a series of relatively modest steps, including a multiagency report on changes needed for the H-1B visa program, under which the government admits 85,000 foreign workers annually, many of them in the high-tech, industrial, medical and science fields.

About 6% of the visas now go to the Labour Department's top skill level, while eight in 10 workers on the visa are paid less than the median wage for their fields, the White House said in a fact sheet distributed to reporters. USA government data shows that almost 127,000 were granted to Indian applicants past year. In addition, the review of the H-1B visa process might also affect how well foreign workers are paid.

However, one fact remains that none of these measures will actually protect the American workers unless they are applicable to all companies because Indian companies are the only ones covered by numerous legislation - contemplated as well as existing, and account for only 20 percent of the visas.

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"Highly skilled immigrants create new American jobs, raise wages for native-born workers, and contribute enormously to growing our economy", said Todd Schulte, head of Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg's advocacy group FWD.us.

Congressman Bill Pascrell, Ranking Democrat on the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade, alleged that the executive order is yet another "broken promise" from Mr. Trump, who had reportedly told the American people that he would end the H-1B visa programme.

No matter, he's right on the overall thrust of this executive order. "This will stop", Trump was quoted as saying after he signed the executive order.

During the speech, Trump talked about the issues with NAFTA, problems with the H-1B visa program and issues with the government buying goods and services from outside America.

An April 3 announcement by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services also detailed "multiple measures" to deter and detect H-1B visa fraud and abuse. "With this action, we are sending a powerful signal to the world". The government uses a lottery to award 65,000 visas every year and randomly distributes another 20,000 to graduate student workers.

Martha Farmer, CEO of North Shore Innoventures, a business incubator for life sciences and bio-tech companies at Beverly's Cummings Center, said educated foreign workers increase innovation at US technology firms and contribute to local economies.

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