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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-04-2010, 10:57 AM
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Default Live updates: Advocacy day Event

Live updates of the advocacy day event will be posted on this thread as well as

Advocacy Days

Updates will start pouring in from Sunday morning 10:30 AM and continue till Tuesday night.

Please stay tuned

Last edited by pappu; 06-04-2010 at 01:05 PM.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 06-07-2010, 02:44 PM
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Advocacy day is going well. There are about 300 meetings being planed between today and tomorrow. Its very hectic in the situation room.

This afternoon USCIS Ombudsman came to meet us in the situation room and spoke with the members. More details and pictures will be posted soon. Stay tuned.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 06-07-2010, 03:06 PM
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Thanks for the update Pappu. I am ashamed of missing this big and important event.
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 06-07-2010, 03:09 PM
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Congress.org - News : Why Bill Gates cares about immigration

Why Bill Gates cares about immigration
Foreign workers have a stake in fight to change laws.

Activists on both sides of the immigration debate tend to focus on the millions of illegal immigrants whose fate rests on whether Congress passed a law.

But foreigners here legally also have a stake in this fight.

The U.S. issues temporary worker visas, called H-1B after their official classification, to thousands of non-residents each year. Often, they hold college degrees and have technical skills.

Microsoft and other technology companies hire many workers this way. They often have to prove they can't hire skilled U.S. citizens to fill those jobs first.

Bill Gates wrote in the Washington Post several years back that there is an employment gap that H-1B visas help fill:

This issue has reached a crisis point. Computer science employment is growing by nearly 100,000 jobs annually. But at the same time studies show that there is a dramatic decline in the number of students graduating with computer science degrees.

The United States provides 65,000 temporary H-1B visas each year to make up this shortfall -- not nearly enough to fill open technical positions.

H-1B workers, who have united under grassroots groups like Immigration Voice , want more than just an increase in visas. They want the government to streamline the rules.

Currently, the workers have to apply for green cards through their employers, often a lengthy and cumbersome process. They can't switch jobs easily and sometimes have to reapply for a visa even if they move jobs within the same company. They have to leave the country every few years before they can reapply for a visa.

The workers can also apply for a spouse to come to the U.S., but their partners are not allowed to work under the H-4 status granted to them. The activists argue that those individuals represent a skilled base of workers who could contribute to the U.S. economy and help pay for household expenses.

Powerful corporations back the H-1 B workers in their demands, since it would make it easier for them to hire skilled workers. But groups like Numbers USA argue that those companies shouldn't hire non-residents at a time when many Americans are jobless.

-- Ambreen Ali, Congress.org
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 06-07-2010, 03:27 PM
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USCIS Ombudsman Ms. January visits Immigration Voice Situation Room

http://advocacydays.blogspot.com/



USCIS Ombudsman Ms. January speaking to the Immigration Voice members.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 11:23 AM
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The event was a big success. We will be posting more updates soon.
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 12:55 PM
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Thumbs up Attending the Advocacy days in DC

Cost of flight ticket, hotel and car : $520
Cost of metro tickets : $14
Cost of a couple of lunch + dinners : $50
Cost of taking cabs to visit lawmakers : $20
Cost of attending the meetings with lawmakers and seeing every IVian, that attended the event during the last three days, working relentlessly for the entire immigrant community stuck in the huge greencard backlog : PRICELESS PRICELESS PRICELESS

I think, the event was a huge success and the outcome of the meetings were positive. I wish at least one representative from each state participated in the event. Some offices insisted that they talk to their constituents.

Kudos to everyone who participated!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 01:29 PM
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Default Inspiring..

Just got back to from DC and back to work. In a nutshell, it was amazing to relive the 2007 experience and reconnect with the dedicated IV members and Core team.

More updates coming..
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 01:34 PM
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Default Here is my experience and request to other members

Hi Guys

I would like to point out a few things about the recent Lobby day we from IV did on June 6th and 7th in Washington DC.

I am a proud participant and I am glad I did take part in it. This was my first time and I am ready to this again when needed. Initially I was skeptical about this drive like a lot of you . But after I saw the commitment and dedication of our senior members , I am encouraged and I am glad I went there to DC and I was surprised how positive was the response I got from the offices of senators and congressmen and congresswomen. There were a lot of IV members who traveled from all across the country although there were a few states from where members could not make it to DC. Thanks to all of those who attended this event and those who attended know how much positive feeling we had on those 3 days.

In my opinion we were successful in bringing the attention of various congressmen/congresswomen and senators to the issue of employment based green card backlogs. A lot of the senators offices were already aware of what IV is doing and in some cases when we said we are from IV, They started telling why we were there and they were very supportive of our cause.

Some of them had no idea what we were talking about. They think that there is no such thing as backlog in green cards for high skilled immigrants from some countries like India and china and Philippines etc.. We had to educate them and explain the entire green card process steps to their legal aides but towards the end they understood our issue and were supportive of our cause.

Actually a lot of the staffers of senators and congressmen attended the Reception on capital hill on Tuesday. That also underscores the support we have there. To translate the support into more concrete legislative support in our favor, We need to organize more and increase number of members attending these events in future to have a more solid impact on them.

I want to bring up one point very clearly. Guys there is no one in Washington DC offices talking about the difficulties we are facing other than IV organization members . We need to lobby the lawmakers much much before any legislation is drafted and taken up for debate in congress. If we think we will rise up and make some noise when the bill is tabled, we are wrong. By then we will be very very late in the game. The deals would have already be done in congress and our issues will not be addressed at all. ( that is just how business is done in Washington . If you snooze you loose) We need to rise up and take a more active role in IV by
1. Contacting senators and congressmen in our districts and explain to them the issues we are facing , IV Can help you by providing the documentation required and any other help needed in talking to the representatives. ( you will be surprised by their support and positive response to our issues when you meet them )
2. Register and take part in the IV state chapters meetings and discussions
3. Donate what ever we can ( 10 , 20 , 30$ etc..) to our cause in IV . If we can not help ourselves, no one can help us .(keep in mind in DC We would need money to take up any advocacy efforts ).
4. Participate in the lobby drives and other such events to raise awareness about our problems. Numbers really matter in DC . just posting the issues on forums will not help us although it may serve as a consolation by venting out on forums . this will not take us anywhere

Guys please talk to your friends who are in the limbo in EB GC process and get them to actively be involved for our cause. We all will be benefited by the results from the efforts we put in. We all have day jobs at the same time we need to sacrifice some time and resources to the larger cause.

Hope I have inspired my fellow members who are sitting on fence to actively get involved in IV and support our cause.

Thanks
Redds777














Quote:
Originally Posted by needhelp! View Post
Just got back to from DC and back to work. In a nutshell, it was amazing to relive the 2007 experience and reconnect with the dedicated IV members and Core team.

More updates coming..
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 01:58 PM
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Default Thanks one and all

Cant thank you less redds777 for the update and the inspirational account you have provided.

Truly salute all you IV members for your untiring focused effort, dedication, solidarity and commitment you heroes have torrentially outpoured over the last 3 days at the doorstep of these congressmen.

this GC business apart, personally I learnt so many new things in life by attending this event.... this is truly a unique event of its kind.

Thank you every body, thank you.
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Old 06-09-2010, 02:03 PM
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by redds777 View Post
Hi Guys


I want to bring up one point very clearly. Guys there is no one in Washington DC offices talking about the difficulties we are facing other than IV organization members . We need to lobby the lawmakers
3. Donate what ever we can ( 10 , 20 , 30$ etc..) to our cause in IV .
Thanks Redds777!

For this event we did fund raising and that helped the cause. for the Lobby efforts is there any number that IV want to publish and members will get inspired again!
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 02:21 PM
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Default Our Funding Drive for this advocacy event was not successful

Our Goal for this event was $50000 and so far we did not even raise 20k. We are approximately 60% under target. We won't be able to have another event like this if we go down this path. The last thing we want to happen is our efforts to stall due to lack of dollars. it would undo everything we have done in the past 4.5 years

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Originally Posted by sanju_dba View Post
Thanks Redds777!

For this event we did fund raising and that helped the cause. for the Lobby efforts is there any number that IV want to publish and members will get inspired again!
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 02:36 PM
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Default company support

We can also ask some big companies like Microsoft who back legal immigration extensively to help us financially right?

just my 2 cents

Quote:
Originally Posted by santb1975 View Post
Our Goal for this event was $50000 and so far we did not even raise 20k. We are approximately 60% under target. We won't be able to have another event like this if we go down this path. The last thing we want to happen is our efforts to stall due to lack of dollars. it would undo everything we have done in the past 4.5 years
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 02:40 PM
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Default I personally have no contacts to approach Microsoft

Can you?

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Originally Posted by cbpds View Post
We can also ask some big companies like Microsoft who back legal immigration extensively to help us financially right?

just my 2 cents
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  #15 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 03:02 PM
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Default

Even if 1000 of our ~41000 members contribute 100 dollars each, we can host two more events like this.

It makes sense to ask help from outside of the organization only when our internal resources are all exhausted. However, sadly, most of us do not want to even contribute for the good cause.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cbpds View Post
We can also ask some big companies like Microsoft who back legal immigration extensively to help us financially right?

just my 2 cents
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