Another company has joined the growing list of businesses that have replaced American employees with less expensive foreign workers.
Catalina Marketing will be replacing about 50 of its IT employees with workers from the outsourcing firm Mindtree. Adding insult to injury, those laid off workers are being made to train their foreign replacements, according to a report from Tampa Bay’s Fox 13.
“Employees are expected to personally train their Indian replacements, reverse roles and watch their replacement work,” said an IT employee speaking to FOX 13 on condition of anonymity due to fear of retribution from the company. “Once management is satisfied with the transition, the American worker is laid off.”
Catalina, in a statement to Fox 13, did not respond to questions but instead said the move part of the firm’s “ongoing focus on enhancing Catalina’s unique business competencies, building new capabilities, and focusing on core business strategies.”
Catalina’s replacement effort comes following a long line of tech companies who have taken to replacing American employees with cheaper foreign workers, on H-1B visas —most notably Disney and Southern California Edison.
At the urging of a bipartisan group of lawmakers lead by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), the Labor Department has launched an investigation into two foreign companies that have brought guest workers on H-1B visas to the U.S. to replace American employees, Infosys and Tata.
“We’re pleased to hear that the Labor Department is taking a first step to stanch this tide of visa abuse. A number of U.S. employers, including some large, well-known, publicly-traded corporations, have laid off thousands of American workers and replaced them with H-1B visa holders,” Durbin and Sessions said in a joint statement earlier this month.
The senators had requested a more broad investigation into H-1B abuses, noting that the frequency of H-1B-driven layoffs “seems to have increased dramatically in the past year alone.”
In a separate inquiry, spurred by lay-offs at Walt Disney World in Orlando Sen. Bill Nelson called on the Department of Homeland Security to investigate “potential misuses” of the H-1B program.
“I want to know if there are abuses going on in the system,” Nelson wrote on June 4. “This program was created to help fill jobs where there were labor shortages, not to take jobs away from anyone.”