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Jordan Candler / January 27, 2016

Ousted Disney Workers Fight Back

Two former workers whose jobs were taken by foreigners file lawsuits.

Last year, a former Disney World employee told a tale of how the magic was stolen from 250 seasoned tech employees. The ousted workers, whose jobs were handed over to foreigners courtesy of the H-1B visa program, were threatened with losing severance payouts if they declined to train their replacements. As you can imagine, this cheap-labor-and-easy-votes scheme didn’t fly with them, and it was only a matter of time before Disney faced legal trouble. According to the Orlando Sentinel, roughly “two dozen of the Disney workers who were laid off have made complaints to the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission” that are still being investigated. But two former employees — Leo Perrero and Dena Moore — are asking for the courts to intervene. This week the duo filed federal lawsuits, “accusing [Disney] and two outsourcing firms [HCL Inc. and Cognizant Technologies] of conspiring to replace workers with less costly foreign ones using H-1B visas,” says the Sentinel.

Jazz Shaw over at Hot Air has this interesting observation: “While these are still allegations at this point, I’m seeing some very typical language in the Disney response. Rather than saying that it never happened or that the workers were let go for cause, etc. there are terms being bandied about such as unsustainable legal theory and a declaration that they have complied with all applicable employment laws. Such arguments may or may not wind up carrying the day in a court of law, but the layman’s translation which immediately comes to my mind is that they checked with their lawyers in advance and were pretty much assured that they could get away with it.”

That’s not to say the plaintiffs’ case is bound to fail. But we have a government that won’t enforce existing immigration law, which makes stretching the legal parameters of the H-1B visa system less risky. It’s now up to a judge to insert some common sense and, yes, even decency. Concludes Shaw, “If you want to cut down on illegal immigration, start prosecuting huge outfits like Disney for things such as this.” And don’t feel bad about it. As our Arnold Alert wrote, “This is one American who will never apologize for desiring a nation that caters primarily — and overwhelmingly — to Americans. Neither should anyone else.”

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