“The extremely educated international nationwide is de facto on the mercy of the U.S. employers,” stated Annie Beaudoin, a former Canadian immigration officer.
The H-1B program targets extremely educated and specialised international employees in fields resembling tech and well being care. Massive tech corporations like Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Meta and Apple all sponsor 1000’s of candidates every year.
The visa has change into more and more aggressive since its creation in 1990. For 2024, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Companies obtained 758,994 eligible purposes, however solely 188,400 had been chosen for the ultimate drawing to get an H-1B visa.
“It is vitally traumatic,” stated Harnoor Singh, a software program engineer at Microsoft and H-1B visa holder from India. “It took me 3 times to get accepted within the lottery.”
Layoffs hit the tech business early this 12 months, with Microsoft letting go of 10,000 staff in January and Amazon chopping 18,000 jobs across the identical time. The labor market shake-up meant that H-1B visa holders who had been laid off had as much as 60 days to discover a new sponsor, switch visa standing or face deportation.
Frederick Anokye is from Ghana and was a real-time defect evaluation engineer at Micron. He is one of many unfortunate H-1B holders hit by the layoffs.
“I am nonetheless in search of jobs within the U.S.,” stated Anokye. “It isn’t simple. Even sure corporations are nonetheless shedding.”
On July 16, Canada capitalized on the state of affairs.
It launched a pilot program for as much as 10,000 U.S. H-1B visa holders to use for a three-year open work allow in Canada. The purposes reached capability the subsequent day and, as of October, the Canadian authorities says greater than 6,000 work permits have been issued as U.S. international H-1B holders arrive at its border.
“That is unprecedented,” stated licensed immigration marketing consultant Kubeir Kamal of the Faculty of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants. “By no means heard of any comparable program previously.”
Shivastuti Koul, an H-1B holder from India who was laid off from Microsoft, jumped on the chance.
“My important cause was to have a way of safety,” stated Koul. “I wished to guarantee that if nothing pans out, I can get a Canadian work allow and apply for positions in Canada earlier than my grace interval expires. I can simply transfer.”
This system is part of Canada’s Tech Expertise Technique, a bigger multiyear plan to recruit the world’s high tech expertise. A CBRE research discovered that Canada’s tech market has grown 15.7% since 2020, outpacing the U.S., which grew 11.4%. The research additionally reveals that Canada now has 1.1 million tech employees, and Toronto and Vancouver ranked among the many high 10 tech cities within the U.S. and Canada.
“At the moment it’s my plan to attempt to transfer to Canada if I am not capable of finding something right here inside the U.S. as quickly as potential,” stated Anokye. “Canada can also be an amazing nation, particularly for immigrants.”
Canadian Immigration Minister Marc Miller wasn’t out there for an interview, however a spokesperson stated in an announcement that, “The immense curiosity in Canada’s new H1-B utility stream is a powerful indication of simply how aggressive Canada is on the worldwide stage. On the subject of attracting worldwide expertise, we stay a high vacation spot.”
To be taught extra about how Canada is concentrating on H-1B visa holders, watch the video.
Authentic information supply Credit score: www.cnbc.com