The lawsuit claims that Facebook refused to recruit, consider, or hire qualified and available U.S. workers for more than 2,600 available positions and that the social media company instead illegally reserved jobs for immigrant workers it was sponsoring for permanent residence.
“The Department of Justice’s lawsuit alleges that Facebook engaged in intentional and widespread violations of the law, by setting aside positions for temporary visa holders instead of considering interested and qualified U.S. workers,” said Assistant Attorney General Eric S. Dreiband of the Civil Rights Division.
According to the lawsuit, after a two-year investigation into Facebook’s practices, the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division determined ‘reasonable cause.’ The investigation revealed that Facebook’s recruitment methods dissuaded U.S. workers from applying to its permanent labor certification process (PERM) positions. The department concluded that the social media company received “zero or one U.S. worker applicants for 99.7% of its PERM positions, while comparable positions at Facebook that were advertised on its careers website during a similar time period typically attracted 100 or more applicants each.”
“Our message to workers is clear: if companies deny employment opportunities by illegally preferring temporary visa holders, the Department of Justice will hold them accountable. Our message to all employers — including those in the technology sector — is clear: you cannot illegally prefer to recruit, consider, or hire temporary visa holders over U.S. workers,” said Dreiband.
The positions at issue offered an average salary of around $156,000. The department is seeking unspecified civil penalties and back pay on behalf of U.S. workers denied employment.