CUC Did Not File Renewals Until Days Before the Deadline

January 7, 2016

U.S. District Court for the NMI Judge Ramona Manglona rejected CUC's request for a temporanry restraining order that would have allowed 18 skilled CUC workers to continue working while their petition for renewal was processed by USCIS.

The lawsuit filed by CUC suggested that the USCIS delayed the processing of the permits, when in reality the permits were submitted on December 28, 2015 only days before the December 31, 2015 deadline.

How infuriating this must be to the employees who must trust that their employers will process their renewals in a responsible timely manner. They are out of work (and pay) because the employer waited until the last minute to submit their CW-1 applications. The action also does not reflect much concern for the residents of the CNMI who depend on the utility services.

The engineers and other skilled workers who have been employed by CUC for years and even decades should have been petitioned under H-1B Visa program so that they could earn a pathway to citizenship. The CUC owes them that much for their years of dedicated employment.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

CUC doesn't owe the workers anything other than what is required by law (i.e., a paycheck or other labor related requirements). I don't know what year the blogger is living in but there is no such thing as a lifetime job (just ask the workers in Japan), loyalty, free citizenship, gold pocketwatches for your retirement, etc. And the H1-B visa SHOULD NOT BE A PATHWAY TO CITIZENSHIP. The H-1B is a non-immigrant visa (READ: NON-IMMIGRANT VISA) It allows U.S. employers to temporarily employ foreign workers in specialty occupations. If a foreign worker in H-1B status quits or is dismissed from the sponsoring employer, the worker must either apply for and be granted a change of status to another non-immigrant status, find another employer (subject to application for adjustment of status and/or change of visa), or leave the U.S. (READ: LEAVE THE U.S.)
The foreign worker must possess at least a bachelor's degree or its equivalent and state licensure, if required to practice in that field. (AND I WOULD SUGGEST: HAVE VERIFIABLE DEGREES AND OTHER DOCUMENTATION - NOT SOMETHING COUNTERFEIT OR MADE UP).
The U.S. is getting OVERLOADED with foreigners, migrants, refugees, etc. It's time to regulate the influx and protect those who really earned it (our own citizens).

Wendy Doromal said...

Does anyone really 'owe' anyone anything? Employers who demonstrate integrity and feel a sense of moral obligation to their employees receive respect and loyalty in return. Those who support bringing in foreigners to work and treat them as mere disposable labor units may want to check their moral compasses. We are a country of immigrants. It is amazing to me that hatred and xenophobia still exists in a country that claims to support human rights.

You seem unaware of the role of our country's foreign workers and their economic and social contributions. For example, very few American citizens work in the fields. It is the hardworking immigrants who put the food on our tables. I am fortunate to know the migrant farmworkers and to work with their advocates. Those who support deportation of millions of undocumented workers support adversely impacting our economy and food chain. It would serve all Americans to grant the law abiding undocumented immigrants a pathway to citizenship.

Of course, all of the CNMI's long-term legal, nonresidents should absolutely be granted a pathway to citizenship. We must stop this unethical, expensive and bureaucratic revolving door that treats PEOPLE as disposable, replaceable labor units. Shame on the United States for perpetuating this attitude! Shame on those who support such an inhumane system.

A good read is Zandy Dandan's editorial, "The Problem and Possible Solution" from the Marianas Variety: http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/editorials/82880-editorials-2016-jan-08 It accurately points out flaws of the federal system that harms employees and employers and questions those with the power to change the system.

Anonymous said...

It's time people realize that this is 2016, not 1816 and we don't need an influx of laborers to build a railroad across the United States. I firmly believe that in this day and age, immigration creates more problems than it solves. When you allow citizens of other countries to leave (why are they leaving in the first place?)and emmigrate somewhere else, you are in effect an "enabler" (in the same sense that it is used for describing people who live with other people who have addictions). If people were prevented from leaving a particular country and going elsewhere, I can assure you that nature would take its course and they would either force their own government to change or improve, or they will find a way to create their own economic opportunities on their home soil. Sure, I recognize the value of CW's who work in the CNMI, but that was their choice (again, out of economic necessity - not necessarily for some idealogical reasoning). Seriously, I really wonder how many CW's would choose to stay on Saipan once they received a "green card"? Personally, I understand the situation and I do have some sympathy for the plight of CW's. But, the U.S. is being flooded with "immigrants" both legal and illegal, and it's time we start regulating it responsibly. Yes, we need certain workers for jobs that no one else wants, but again, stand in line - GET A WORK VISA and don't expect it to come with "automatic citizenship rights, welfare benefits, and whatever else. You are a "CONTRACT WORKER" from another country, so please live within that meaning. If you want to become citizen, apply and wait - just like thousands of others around the world.

Anonymous said...

Anon3:47PM

We CWs absolutely understand that we are "CONTRACT WORKER". I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND YOUR IGNORANT OF THE TRUE SITUATION HERE! For you to easily see the reality here, why don't come down here RIGHT NOW and COOK FOR OUR STUDENTS BECAUSE TODAY OUR STUDENTS HAVE NO LUNCHES at schools. COME DOWN HERE because island wide blackout is imminent. Come here to do plumbing as our sewer stinks! DID YOU GET THE REALITY HERE OR YOUR LIVING IN 1816? I could tell you more!

Anonymous said...

To anononymous at 8:23AM, I do understand the situation in Saipan and have been there and worked there. Most of the blame, if not all of the blame belongs on the shoulders of the CNMI government for the dismal state of the island. Unfortunately, the people never listened to the late Tony Pellegrino when he suggested that the island diversify it's economy and concentrate on teaching the locals "trades" (i.e., the school he started). Over the years I have watched the island go from bad to even worse - but I do believe the federal government is taking the right steps in capping the number of CW's allowed. Nothing will change for the better until the entire "labor situation" is revamped. 2019 is coming, and hopefully the CNMI government will see the writing on the wall. My biggest argument against contract workers is that they "export" money off the island instead of circulating back into the economy to make it grow. Yes, you can argue that Saipan needs CW's because the CNMI lacks the necessary labor resources for it's economy - but I could argue that allowing employers to bring in CW's prevents the economy from shifting towards a more successful model much like Guam has. If the employers on Saipan improved the wages (which they won't because CW's will accept substandard wages and living conditions), more U.S. citizens from the mainland or maybe even residents of Hawaii or Guam would take an interest in living and working in the CNMI.
The CNMI will always remain an "exploitation" island as long as it has a class of people it can "exploit". That exploited group is the contract workers, mainly from the Philippines. Time for this to change!

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:54AM
I beg to disagree!!!. The CNMI will always remain an "exploitation" island as long as it has a class of government that "exploit". A CW program that flawed and "exploit". CNMI government has all the power to stop this CW program. That exploited group is the contract workers, mainly from the Philippines and China can just go back home when this CW program stop, what else can they do? Nothing! It's people like you that allows exploitation because you don't stand up against this. The supreme power is in your hands - citizen of CNMI not us, CWs! CWs have no rights here, not a single one. We are only here to work because you need us, that's all!

Anonymous said...

To "I beg to disagree" - ditto my response to you. I really don't believe it's the government that exploits you "directly", rather they are just low class prostitutes looking for any type of income they can get their hands on (from businesses). The real culprits are the "employers" doing business on the island. The hotels and other "foreign registered corporations" only look at the bottom line (financials). If you own a business and can get a worker that will do almost anything for $5.55 an hour (CNMI minimum wage) why would you bother to hire anyone else? The real problem with the wages is based on supply & demand. If you have recruiters in Makati that have an unlimited supply of willing & able low wage workers, nothing will improve in the CNMI. Contract workers keep the standard of living in the CNMI from rising by accepting these ridiculous salaries. If you don't believe me, then go on the CNMI DOL website and look at the JVA's and the inflated requirements and the corresponding low wages. The CW's do have a choice, it's called leaving the island or refusing to come here. Only then, and only then - will the employers have to raise the wages offered. It's all about supply & demand.

Wendy Doromal said...

Of course the government exploits the CWs, just as the employers do. The CWs are disenfranchised and make up a majority of the population! Who voted against delaying the minimum wage?

"It's called leaving the island" -really? People who have left their homes and have no place to return to should leave the place they have lived most of their adult lives? Sad statement.

Anonymous said...

http://www.philstar.com/headlines/32323/pinoy-workers-saipan-stage-rally

"Victoria Tanesa, a mother from Laguna, said she has been in Saipan for seven years and wants to stay because there are even fewer job opportunities in her country.
I like it here because I have no job in the Philippines,” said Tanesa, who works as a commercial cleaner."

The above paragraph solidifies my point. It's all about economic opportunities - it's not about repression. You started the federalization movement Wendy, now they have it. They can abide by the rules. If you really want human rights, then work to improve the economy of the Philippines. No offense, but I have a strong disliking of "well intentioned" do gooders that can't see the forest through the trees. Just look at the mess in Guam & Hawaii because our idiotic government made a pact with the FSM that allows their citizens to come over and become a burden. The U.S. is going to collapse because of our deficit, our idiotic policies, and our penchant to be "bent over" taking on other countries social problems. Maybe you should start helping all the "oppressed" black & hispanics working in Florida?? There are more of them near you, then there are filipinos in the CNMI.

Wendy Doromal said...

12:31 You really need to come out from behind that anonymous tag if you want your comments taken seriously. Of course, immigrants come to our country for opportunity. Read the inscription on the Statue of Liberty! That is a reason to treat them poorly, to consider them as disposable labor units? I think not!

I am disappointed with the federal system, as I have stated over 100 times on this site. I have listed numerous suggestions for improvement. I lobby for reform and for a pathway to citizenship for the legal, longterm nonresidents of the CNMI.

I work with migrant farm workers in our state and I am involved in immigration issues and minimum wage issues in Florida and the U.S.

Wendy Doromal said...

Anonymous -You sent two more very long comments that are full of misinformation. If you want to debate me come out from behind your anonymous label or email me: doromal@earthlink.net. I am not posting your comments. I don't have the time to correct your many errors.

Anonymous said...

CNMI won't or can't pool the required US/Local workforce because there's not even enough of these individuals who wanted to work for a meager $6.05 per hour. Now comes Best Sundown errr....Best Sunshine who needs more CW's, Kilili must tell them to process H2's instead. U.S. CW1 cap is down by 1000 now BS wants more! Huh! Only in Saipan. Show me the money!

Anonymous said...

ANON 1.19AM AND 3:47PM, 12:31AM

CNMI IS DEPENDENT ON CWS UNTIL MOST OF YOU DEPEND ON U.S WELFARES!!! You're stinking need it, you turned to sloth that don't want to work. Here are the CWs to work for you, CWs paid taxes to help your ailing economy. While you're lining up to get "YOUR ENTITLEMENTS!" SHAME ON YOU!
IMAGINE YOUR ISLAND WITHOUT CWS WHO ARE NOT ONLY WORKERS BUT, CONSUMERS, CLIENTS, CUSTOMERS, STUDENTS, TENANTS, DEPOSITORS, ENTERTAINERS, FRIENDS/CLASSMATES OF YOUR CHILDREN, MENTORS ETC, ETC. Without them and their contributions, you're probably living remotely in 1816.

Anonymous said...

Yes, CUC applied only a day before the deadline, but this really didn't matter. Many turned in applications in July, August, and September and now find themselves without work, waiting for USCIS to act. So it wouldn't have mattered if CUC applied one, two, or three months ago.