Foreign Students Say, “Hell, No!”

Posted August 18, 2011
By Clay Cerny

400 foreign students walked off temporary jobs at Hershey’s plant in Pennsylvania.  While the temporary workers (J-1 visa) were paid $8.35 an hour, they ended up with less than they paid for the visa after rent and program fees were deducted from their pay.  A Hershey spokesperson pointed out that these employees worked for a third party company (Exel), but that’s the not the point.

The point is:  exploited workers walked off the job.  Verizon’s workers said, “Enough.”  The unions in Wisconsin said, “Enough.”  The people of Ohio have told their anti-labor governor, “Enough.”  Maybe a new day is dawning.

Then, again, maybe not.  Liz Goodwin, writing for Yahoo, notes that many people involved in the J-1 visa program have been exploited.  Employers like this program because they don’t have to pay Social Security.

Enough of gimmicks like the J-1 visa.  Let’s put Americans back to work and pay them decent wages.