Monday, June 13, 2016

Workers tossing nondisparagement agreements

It's no secret many American companies are laying off American workers--and giving their jobs to foreigners on special visas.

Often the laid-off workers are asked to sign nondisparagement agreements as a condition of severence.

For the most part, they clam up and take the severance pay.

The New York Times carried a story on this written by Julia Preston, June 11, 2016.

Apparently a worker at Abbott Labs handed in his badges and passwords as his job was given to a worker from India, then did not sign the severance agreement along with the promise not to complain.

It cost him $10,000 in severance, but he complained a lot.

Congress has questioned these agreements, too.  But often workers cannot talk to Congress either.

The special visas, called H-1Bs, are supposed to import a worker with a body of specialized knowledge, not just a cheaper workers. In fact, they are expressly not supposed to undercut the wages of Americans.

This is a farce.

Another company, Eversource Energy, also required American workers to train the Indian immigrants on H-1Bs who would replace them. Two employees there held a press conference, despite having signed nondisparagements.

Often, laid off employees fear retaliation and need their health care coverage and other aspects of their severance package.

The guy from Abbott who refused to sign said he was single with no kids and could put his foot down.

And he did.

Now, he and 13 other Abbott employees have filed federal claims of discrimination based on their ages--and on the fact that they are American citizens.

It's come to that.

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