This Bloom Energy story about bringing in welders from Mexico to do work in Silicon Valley that they are not authorized to do got me thinking about a brush IBM had with immigration authorities back in 1996.
IBM was eventually — and somewhat controversially — cleared of wrongdoing. Not so for Bloom, which the U.S. Department of Labor fined about $38,000 for back pay and penalties.
Publication: SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS
Headline: INS CLEARS IBM ON IMPORTED HELP; WORKER DISAGREES
Reporter: By MIRANDA EWELL, Mercury News Staff Writer
Print Run Date: 10/3/96
Edition: Morning Final
Page Number: 1
Section Letter: A
Memo: Thomas Farragher of the Mercury News Washington Bureau contributed to this report.
Immigration officials said Wednesday that they were satisfied that IBM did not violate the law by using visas generally reserved for training to import Mexican workers who assembled disk drives at Third World wages in its San Jose plant.
“We reviewed their documents and received a clarification of the company’s training program, ” said Sharon Rummery, an official in the San Francisco office of the INS. “Based on our preliminary inquiry, the INS is satisfied that the B-1 visas were used appropriately and that IBM is in compliance with the law.”