The Nation | 23 October 2018

A new multiyear study reveals that the United States’ so-called “guestworker” system has become a complex transnational web of fraud that looks legal on paper but turns out to be brutal in practice. The H2A and H2B labor-visa programs, which in theory at least offer a legal pathway to coveted temporary jobs in this country, have instead led countless migrant workers, mostly from Mexico, to sink their savings into recruiters’ fees and other schemes.

Since 2005, the group that published the analysis, Centro de los Derechos del Migrante (CDM) “received reports of fraud affecting 6,497 people who have each paid an average recruitment fee of $9,300 pesos—the equivalent of three and a half months’ worth of a minimum wage salary in Mexico—for a false or non-existent job offer.”



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