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US workers sue Disney, Cognizant, HCL over jobs lost to H-1B visa abuse

Washington DC: Even after Leo Perrero was laid off a year ago from his tech job at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida - and spent his final months training a temporary immigrant from India to do his work - he still hoped to find a new position in the company.

However, Perrero found that in spite of his high performance ratings, he and most of the other 250 tech workers Disney dismissed would not be rehired for at least a year, and probably never.

Perrero has filed a lawsuit against Disney, HCL and Cognizant Technologies. The lawsuit claims that the companies conspired to break US laws by using temporary H-1B visas to bring in immigrant workers, knowing that Americans would be displaced.

Perrero said that the temporary immigrants were not so skilled after all. He described having to train them over a period of ninety days, the first month of which they spent just watching and recording on video and audio what the American workers did. During the second month, they worked with the US workers, and in the third month they took over the job and the US workers were tasked with ensuring they did everything correctly.

However, Disney denied any wrong doing and said the lawsuits are "based on an unsustainable legal theory and are a wholesale misrepresentation of the facts". The company said it hired more than 100 people back into other roles.