Amazon, Expedia tell USA court Trump immigration order affects business

Posted February 01, 2017

The controversial executive order, which restricts the issue of visas to visitors from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen to prevent them from entering the U.S., has been met with fierce resistance in protests around the world.

Washington is the first state to sue President Donald Trump over his executive order barring immigrants from seven countries from entering the USA, including claims that Microsoft Corp. and Amazon.com Inc. employees are among those affected by the policy.

The tech community is having none of this immigration ban imposed by the Trump administration, and while many have vouched to donate money to push against the order in court, some companies are actually signing on to a lawsuit - Microsoft, Amazon, and Expedia. Ours is a nation of immigrants.

Attorney General Bob Ferguson, a Democrat, contends in the complaint filed Monday in Seattle federal court that Trump's January 27 executive order is "undermining the state's sovereign interests".

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He ended the email by saying that affected employees - at least a few dozen, according to the company's filing - should know that "the full extent of Amazon's resources are behind you".

Trump's administration has announced it will exacming the use of so-called H1-B work visas where tens of thousands of foreigners work in the U.S. tech industry with lower pay and far fewer benefits than their USA colleagues.

The Washington Post, which is owned by Bezos, reported January 30, 2017, that Bezos wrote in an internal email to Amazon employees that company lawyers have prepared a ¿declaration of support¿ for a lawsuit being brought by Washington state¿s attorney general against President Donald Trump and the administration over Trump¿s executive order on immigration and refugees.

Expedia plans to expand its services as a global travel company and believes it's crucial to hire talent from around the world, he said, noting that employees regularly travel among its global offices. But it could grow more hostile if Trump follows through with a draft executive order aimed at overhauling the H-1B work-visa program tech companies favor.

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According to the Amazon head, the company has 49 employees born in one of the countries targeted by the executive order, out of which only two hold permanent residence in the United States.

Attorney General Bob Ferguson announces lawsuit fighting Trump's executive orders on immigration.

A spokesperson for Microsoft, another Washington-based business, told BuzzFeed News: "Microsoft has been supportive and has provided information to the Attorney General and is willing to provide further testimony if necessary".

In Expedia's declaration of support, the company said it is working with each of the affected travelers to find solutions and says the order "creates significant difficulties for the operation of Expedia's business".

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