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Thread: Shrimpers won’t get new workers for 3-4 weeks

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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Shrimpers won’t get new workers for 3-4 weeks

    Shrimpers won’t get new workers for 3-4 weeks


    Jason Hoekema
    Employees talk in the shade on a shrimp-boat, Thursday, March 30, 2017, at the shrimp basin in Brownsville, Texas. Other crew-members have not been able to return for the coming shrimp season after Congress allowed the lapse of H-2B, creating a shortage of boat crews. The program allowed employers to temporarily hire foreign workers for seasonal work, like working aboard a shrimp boar during the Texas fishing season. (Jason Hoekema/The Brownsville Herald)


    Posted: Tuesday, July 25, 2017 10:07 pm
    By STEVE CLARK | Staff Writer

    The Department of Homeland Security announced July 17 that it would approve 15,000 additional H-2B visas in response to heavy lobbying by various sectors, including the Texas shrimp industry.

    The Brownsville-Port Isabel shrimp fleet, along with the rest of the state’s industry, has been scrambling to find enough workers to crew trawlers since Congress last year failed to renew the H-2B “returning worker exemption,” which waived the cap for H-2B foreign workers who came back to the same jobs each year.

    As a result, fisheries, landscape companies and the hospitality industry have struggled to fill positions normally filled during the busy season by foreign workers.


    The Texas shrimp season reopened July 15, and boats are already in the Gulf of Mexico. Even so, most fleet owners have submitted applications for some of the newly released 15,000 visas even though it will be three or four weeks, once the paperwork is done, before they actually get any workers, said Texas Shrimp Association Executive Director Andrea Hance.


    That’s because, one, boats are still short crew members and, two, if they don’t apply Homeland Security may assume next time around that they didn’t really need more H-2B workers after all, she said.


    “I think just about everybody went ahead and applied for those,” Hance said. “The problem is that if we don’t apply for them, that could come back and bite us in the future.”


    A condition of being able to hire foreign H-2B workers is that the applicants — shrimp boat owners in this case — have to advertise the jobs to U.S. residents. Noting that life on a shrimp boat for 30 to 45 days at a stretch is tough and dangerous work, Hance said few U.S. citizens respond to the ads, and those who are hired either don’t show up or quit right away.


    The Texas shrimp industry hired about 200 U.S. citizens for the current season, she said. Hance said her best estimate is that, during the first week of the season, half of the 100 or so U.S. workers hired by the local shrimp fleet quit and had to be taken back to the mainland.


    sclark@brownsvilleherald.com

    http://www.brownsvilleherald.com/new...17871660d.html

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  2. #2
    Senior Member posylady's Avatar
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    This is a bunch of crap. They don't want to pay workers compensation or taxes. They need to quit their lying. If immigrants get hurt on the job, they get free medical care because they have no insurance and have no workers compensation. If it was an American worker that got hurt on the job they would ask for workers compensation information immediately. This story is getting old fast.
    Last edited by posylady; 07-27-2017 at 10:27 PM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    H-2B employers are subject to the overtime provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). ... The employer must provide workers' compensation insurance for all workers. Housing. Workers are responsible for paying all housing costs and related expenses.

    Mas H-2B Requirements - MAS Labor


    H-2B Program Requirements

    Recruiting
    The H-2B program requires employers to attempt to recruit workers locally. After the H-2B labor certification application is filed, MAS-H2B coordinates local recruitment with the employer and the state Job Service. The program includes MAS-H2B’s placement of “help wanted” classified advertising for two days in a local newspaper approved by the Job Service.


    After obtaining DOL certification for the employer, MAS-H2B coordinates with qualified workers’ representatives, Citizenship and Immigration Service (CIS, the successor to the INS in the Department of Homeland Security) and the Department of State to secure visa approval and arrange transportation for capable, reliable, legal foreign labor.


    Wages

    The DOL determines the applicable H-2B wage rate based on wage statistics for the area and job to be performed. MAS-H2B can generally provide you with the wage currently required in your area upon request, and in advance of your applying for the program.


    H-2B employers are subject to the overtime provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Overtime wages generally apply to all hours worked in excess of 40 each week.


    The employer is responsible for all regular local, state and federal payroll taxes, including paying Social Security and unemployment (FICA, FUTA and SUTA). The employer is also responsible for assisting workers in obtaining Social Security cards upon their arrival.


    The only wage deductions allowed are those permitted under U.S. labor law. With a limited number of exceptions, those deductions may not bring the workers’ wages below the current FLSA minimum wage.


    Workers' Compensation Insurance

    The employer must provide workers’ compensation insurance for all workers.


    Housing

    Workers are responsible for paying all housing costs and related expenses. While H-2B employers are under no legal obligation to provide housing, MAS-H2B requires that its clients make arrangements for housing in advance of the workers’ arrival.


    Transportation

    Employers are now required to pay for their H-2B workers’ round trip transportation from their homes abroad to the place of employment or a nearby station or terminal at the beginning of the season and back to their homes abroad at the end of the season.


    Employers arrange for daily transportation to and from job sites.


    Tools and Supplies

    The employer furnishes all tools and supplies necessary to perform the work at no cost to the worker.

    http://maslabor.com/masLabor_OLD/pag...uirements.html
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  4. #4
    MW
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    I'm betting these shrimpers still aren't paying an equitable wage based on job requirements. 30 to 45 straight days and nights on a shrimp trawler is probably a lot tougher than the DOL determines with their set wage base.

    Problem is many of these visa workers are coming from countries where a dollar will stretch a lot further than it will here because they don't have the same living standard we have. In other words, 10 dollars an hour in Mexico is a fantastic wage but it's a poverty wage here. Remember, the bulk of these worker's wages go back to their home country. That's money that doesn't find its way back into our economy.

    Quit bringing in these guest workers and American's wages will increase. When that happens, employers won't have a problem finding employees. If it ever comes to the point where that's not true, then maybe we have too many employers in certain industries that need to board the doors.

    I'm sick and tired of hearing about how increasing our population through immigration and guest workers will help our country and economy grow. The population in this country has doubled since the 1950's and I would suggest that the quality of life for most Americans have actually decreased over that time. I just don't think growing the economy and country is all it's cut out to be. I would actually argue that our quality of life in this country was better in the 70's than it is now. Financial wealth is not the meter I use to determine quality of life.

    "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" ** Edmund Burke**

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    Senior Member nomas's Avatar
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    Employers are now required to pay for their H-2B workers’ round trip transportation from their homes abroad to the place of employment or a nearby station or terminal at the beginning of the season and back to their homes abroad at the end of the season.

    These trips are expensive! They could save this money for AMERICAN workers, there has to be a tax benefit in this for the employers. If I knew of a company doing this I would make sure they never saw one cent of my (personal) money but I feel they're getting my tax dollars without my approval in some underhanded way!

  6. #6
    Senior Member nomas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MW View Post

    I'm sick and tired of hearing about how increasing our population through immigration and guest workers will help our country and economy grow. The population in this country has doubled since the 1950's and I would suggest that the quality of life for most Americans have actually decreased over that time. I just don't think growing the economy and country is all it's cut out to be. I would actually argue that our quality of life in this country was better in the 70's than it is now. Financial wealth is not the meter I use to determine quality of life.
    Me too MW! Right now I am making the same rate of pay my Father was in the 70's. He supported a family with 2 kids in University, no way I could do that in this day and age! Plus I don't remember him coming home dog tired like I do, and he had a lot more vacation time than I get! But he had the loyalty of a Company behind him... that's long gone!

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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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  8. #8
    Senior Member posylady's Avatar
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    How many actually have workers comp and pay taxes on employees? I have been around when shrimp boats come in and have sat in restaurants when the crew eats. It is one of those things.... there are laws but who follows them anymore? Our elected officials are above the laws, The laws don't pertain to the wealthy and elite. So now we start to bend toward a 3rd world lawless country. I have seen American boats come in with American workers. So we are fed the lies that they do jobs American won't do crap again.
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