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Foreign Labor

December 8, 1985
"Labor Market Sees Sweeping Changes as Firms Restructure" (Nov. 25) mentions that unless employees aren't willing to give up wages and benefits, certain companies will transfer their operations overseas where labor costs less and benefits are little or nonexistent. If these employees are out of work, they won't be able to buy any goods manufactured anywhere, let alone overseas. Do you think that if this trend continues and that our own U.S. government figures out that if the cost of running the government is too high, it too will transfer its operation overseas and run the government with foreign labor?
April 11, 2013 | By Brian Bennett and Lisa Mascaro
WASHINGTON - Senators writing a landmark immigration bill broke a logjam between farmworker unions and growers Thursday, reaching a tentative agreement on future agricultural visas and pay scales for foreign farmworkers, according to people familiar with the negotiations. Labor unions and agricultural industry leaders had been stuck for three weeks on how to legally bring foreign labor into the United States to pick crops and tend livestock at competitive wages. The issue, which is critical to California and other major farming states, became a major stumbling block in bipartisan efforts to craft a comprehensive immigration bill.
February 18, 2004 | From Associated Press
The federal government won't accept any more applications for a popular visa program that provides skilled foreign labor to U.S. companies, Citizenship and Immigration Services said. Less than five months into the fiscal year already there are enough applications to fill all 65,000 slots for H1-B visas, said Chris Bentley, a spokesman for the agency, a division of the Department of Homeland Security. The agency planned to stop accepting applications at the end of the day Tuesday.
February 3, 2009 | Henry Chu
Hundreds of British workers walked off the job Monday, part of a rising tide of industrial unrest sweeping Europe as the continent's economic downturn worsens. Employees at two nuclear power plants in northern England staged wildcat strikes in support of workers at an oil refinery who have been out in protest since the end of last week.
February 8, 1988
Cesar Chavez, president of the United Farm Workers of America, said that his organization was stepping up its battle against growers' use of foreign workers, charging that claims of labor shortages were fictitious. Chavez presided over the UFW's biennial convention in McAllen, Tex., in the heavily agricultural lower Rio Grande Valley.
They toil in Taiwan's dirtiest and most difficult and dangerous jobs. Unlike migrants in many other parts of the world, foreign workers here are legal. But language barriers and the low social status imposed by their short-term contracts leave them vulnerable to job brokers and employers in a system that labor advocates say is rife with abuse.
January 26, 1986 | TOM MOONEY, Associated Press
Each day, Don Breingan watched the supply of leather, laces and stitching shrink at the Bangor factory of G. H. Bass & Co., the shoemakers. There had been no orders for new supplies, he noted. Rumors of a closing had circulated for months. Breingan began asking friends--salesmen familiar with the New England shoe industry--if they knew of other jobs. He spent nights chasing leads by phone.
Business as usual reigns in this desert sheikdom. Eight months after Saddam Hussein's Iraqi legions were repulsed, the passion, anxieties and dark-of-night retributions of the immediate postwar days have softened. Desert Storm camouflage has given way to blue suits of deal-makers from Europe, the United States and Japan. "Mad Max has gone," as one Western diplomat puts it, "and the carpetbaggers have taken over." Now, too, the grasp of bureaucracy is once again choking business enterprise.
A Ventura County Latino group called on Congressman Elton Gallegly to change his vote on a controversial bill that would allow thousands of foreign laborers to temporarily work in the nation's fields, arguing that such legislation is unnecessary and exploitative.
March 22, 2005 | Marc Lifsher, Times Staff Writer
Unocal Corp. settled a landmark human rights lawsuit Monday that accused the El Segundo-based energy company of being responsible for forced labor, rapes and a murder allegedly carried out by soldiers along a natural gas pipeline route in Myanmar. The suit, filed on behalf of 15 Myanmar villagers in Los Angeles County Superior Court in 1996, is the furthest along of about three dozen cases that charge corporations in U.S.
June 12, 2008 | Nicole Gaouette, Times Staff Writer
Though government immigration initiatives are often attacked for bringing foreign employees into the U.S., rarely are the immigrant workers the main critics. On Wednesday, however, a dozen workers from India ended a four-week hunger strike that was meant to highlight their allegations that a guest worker program is abusing foreign laborers and shutting Americans out of decent jobs.
August 17, 2007 | From the Associated Press
While Gap Inc.'s stores have been disappointing shoppers and investors, the factories making the retailer's clothes have been treating workers better, according to the company's latest assessment of its labor practices. The update released Thursday marked the third time the owner of the Gap, Old Navy and Banana Republic chains had publicly critiqued the conditions in overseas factories often derided as "sweatshops" because of abuses inflicted on employees.
June 11, 2007 | Teresa Watanabe, Times Staff Writer
Nicole Oswell was a straight-A student passionately interested since first grade in following in her mother's footsteps as a registered nurse. But she had to wait two years to get into Los Angeles Trade Tech's nursing program, she said, her frustration mounting as national nursing shortages worsened. Lizbeth Gutierrez got lucky. Her wait was only six months.
May 27, 2007 | By Christopher Reynolds
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK -- From Ukraine to Ecuador, scores of young maids and dishwashers are having trouble getting U.S. visas this spring -- and that means trouble in Yosemite Valley. "I've been making beds and scrubbing showers," said Tracy Rogge, vice president of operations for park concessionaire Delaware North Cos. The chief operating officer "cleaned toilets and bagged groceries. Our director of finance was making burgers. This really caught us off-guard." Laura Chastain, recruiting manager for Delaware North, estimates that she is 300 employees short.
May 26, 2007 | From the Associated Press
Gunmen seized a boatload of foreign oil workers Friday, and embassies said three Americans, four Britons and a South African were among them. The vessel, owned by a Nigerian oil-services company, was carrying the foreigners in the Niger Delta, a vast lawless region of mangrove swamps and creeks in southern Nigeria, security officials said. Nearly 200 foreign workers have been kidnapped in 18 months of attacks on oil companies and security forces in the oilfields of the Niger Delta.
May 15, 2007 | From Times Wire Services
A local news website's editor who hired two reporters in India to cover Pasadena said he had been so overwhelmed by reaction to his plan that he had to postpone publication of their first stories. James Macpherson said he had not found the time he hoped to train one of his new staffers to cover Monday's City Council meeting, shown on the Web.
Faced with severe labor shortages, industries in Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong--three of Asia's economic tigers--are relying increasingly on foreign workers from less-developed countries such as the Philippines and Indonesia. As a result, Asian labor is becoming a more mobile, transnational human resource--making the labor-poor and labor-rich nations of the Pacific increasingly interdependent and creating new opportunities for firms engaged in engineering, construction and labor contracting.
State and federal agents raided a garment factory in El Monte early Wednesday that allegedly held dozens of Thai immigrants in virtual slavery behind barbed wire for years, forcing them to labor in servitude to supposedly pay off creditors. The pre-dawn raid by a multi-agency team headed by the California Department of Industrial Relations discovered more than 60 Thai nationals living and working at a gated apartment complex ringed with barbed wire and spiked fences.
January 24, 2007 | From Times Wire Reports
Gunmen demanding a ransom kidnapped an American engineer and a British engineer on their way to work in Nigeria's southern oil city of Port Harcourt, authorities said. The abduction brings to 29 the number of foreign workers held by armed groups in the remote swamps of the Niger Delta. Diplomats said the two men worked for local construction firm Pivot. A security source said the kidnappers demanded $11.7 million.
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