Layoffs Keep Mounting

January of 2009 is brutal for working Americans. A bunch of big-name companies announced new massive layoffs. Actually some are going through maybe their Nth round of workforce reduction already. Take a look at this table below (source: MSN/WSJ):

Company Announcement date Jobs cut % of work force
Circuit City 1/16/2009 34,000 100
Caterpillar 1/26/2009 20,000 18
NEC 1/30/2009 20,000 7
Alcoa 1/6/2009 15,000 14.5
Panasonic 2/4/2009 15,000 5
Boeing 1/28/2009 10,000 6
Molex 1/26/2009 9,300 29
SAS 2/3/2009 9,000 40
Pfizer 1/26/2009 8,300 10
Sprint Nextel 1/26/2009 8,000 13
AstraZeneca 1/29/2009 7,400 11
ING 1/26/2009 7,000 5
Macy’s 2/2/2009 7,000 4
Hitachi 1/30/2009 7,000 2
Home Depot 1/26/2009 7,000 2
Starbucks 1/28/2009 6,700 4
Intel 1/21/2009 6,000 7
Philips Electronics 1/26/2009 6,000 5
PNC Financial Services 2/3/2009 5,800 10
Eaton 1/20/2009 5,200 6
Microsoft 1/22/2009 5,000 5
Eastman Kodak 1/29/2009 4,500 18
STMicroelectronics 1/28/2009 4,500 9
Hertz Global Holdings 1/16/2009 4,000 13
Motorola 1/14/2009 4,000 6

Employers rarely break up the numbers in terms of how many foreign workers will lose their jobs, but it is not surprising if a significant number of H-1B employees are affected. The trouble is, laid-off foreign workers have to deal with more issues than just financial hardship.

“For many of the employees here on a visa, being laid off means that they have to leave the country on very short notice, in many cases uprooting families and children,” – Microsoft Statement

If you are a foreign worker, it is a good idea to plan ahead and know all your options even if there is no immediate danger of being laid off. Maintaining legal status is critical in situations like this, so it helps if you are familiar with change of status (to H4, for example), AC21 (if you have a pending I-485), EAD, unemployment benefits, etc.

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  1. Pingback: Google Jobs Index | Immigration Road Blog

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