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Back this project and the San Francisco Chronicle will deliver a comprehensive multimedia reporting project on H1B visas, looking at the would-be immigrants who want them and the companies that stand to benefit from a loosening of regulations.

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★ DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT ★ Beacon will match every dollar you pledge, up to $7,500 in total.

The H1B visa for skilled immigrants is a hot commodity for Northern California workers and companies.

An H-1B visa is a temporary work permit for a highly skilled worker. It’s one of the main ways that companies in the Bay Area are able to hire immigrant workers for positions in fields like computer engineering and scientific research.

But these visas are subject to a strict quota set by the U.S. government – just 65,000 are allotted each year. And because demand is so high, getting one of these visas can prove very difficult for immigrant workers.

Some, including Bay Area technology companies, have argued that this quota needs to be expanded. Others worry that U.S. workers are losing out on highly-paid jobs.

We don’t want to explore the pro/con arguments. We want to bring you the stories of the people affected.

We know that the H-1B visa matters to our readers in Northern California. Through this project, we’re going to get the resources to do the reporting that’s missing on this issue – a deep look at the lives of workers who successfully get a visa, and what happens to those who miss out.

Our reporting starts in the Bay Area, but we’ll follow the story abroad, too. We know that families back home are just as affected by the outcome of a visa application, so we’ll work to bring you their stories as well.

With your support, we’ll answer questions like:

  • What’s needed for a successful visa application? How do someone’s career options change – for better or worse – if he or she receives a visa?

  • What happens to those whose visa applications are unsuccessful? What’s the experience of having to leave the U.S. and find a job back home?

  • How do the outcomes of a visa application affect families abroad? What sort of connection do H-1B workers have with their families back home? How does that change if a visa is lost?

Good human reporting takes time, resources and investment. Your support lets us pursue this story in a way no one else can.

To do this story correctly, we know that a reporter needs the resources to spend time with these workers and to meet their families abroad. This crowdfunding campaign is a unique way to make those resources available. With your support, a reporter will be able to follow this story across the Bay Area and overseas. And by setting the budget at $15,000, we’ll have the resources to develop rich photos and videos to accompany the story as well.

And because The San Francisco Chronicle plans to edit and distribute this story in print and online, you’ll know that the reporting you support will reach decision makers and advocates on both sides of the issue.

Back this project, and your pledge will be doubled.

Beacon has matching funds available for this project, which means that your support goes even further for free. Each pledge you make will unlock the same amount in matching funds. That means, when you pledge $100, you’re actually helping us get $200 closer to our crowdfunding goal.

Help us bring you the stories of the workers caught in the H-1B debate. Back this project today.

The San Francisco Chronicle reserves all rights to publish or not publish the project, subject to its editorial discretion. By backing the project, you will not be given any equity interest in the San Francisco Chronicle or any of its affiliates entities nor will you be given any equity interest, assignment, license, right of access, right to review, right to approve or other interest of any kind in the project or any materials, information or sources relating to the project.

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Nearly Halfway There!

September 22, 2015 at 9:28 pm

Thanks for backing this reporting project, The Faces Behind the H1-B Debate. In less than a week, we’ve nearly reached the halfway mark to our funding goal. We couldn’t have done it without your support, and we’ve appreciated seeing your thoughts, ideas and feedback about the project.

We have one more favor to ask. Now that you’ve backed the project, if you could take a moment and share the page via e-mail and social media. Telling people why you care about this kind of coverage goes a long way toward getting even more readers on board. If you’re really excited, send an e-mail. More than 75 percent of pledges in a crowdfunding campaign come from e-mail, so it’s the most effective way to share.

Every crowdfunding project starts with a small group of passionate people and grows outward from there. Thanks for being an early backer, and thanks for your help spreading the word.

Beacon + The San Francisco Chronicle

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$95 One-Time Pledge
Thanks for your support. For your one-time pledge at this level, you’ll get a San Francisco Chronicle T-shirt in the size of your choice!
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$150 One-Time Pledge
For your one-time pledge at this level, you’ll get the T-shirt AND a one-year digital subscription to the San Francisco Chronicle.
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$500 One-Time Pledge
Thanks for your tremendous support. In addition to the rewards at the $150 level, you can choose to be recognized for your contribution in the acknowledgements on the final story.
$1000 One-Time Pledge
Our top level backers get everything in the $500 level reward, and an invitation to an exclusive lunch at the San Francisco Chronicle as thanks for all they’ve done to make this reporting possible.
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The San Francisco Chronicle BIOGRAPHY

The San Francisco Chronicle is the largest newspaper-based media company in Northern California. It was founded 150 years ago and boasts a combined online and print audience of more than 30 million people worldwide. The Chronicle’s journalism can be found in print, on its free website, SFGate.com and subscriber-supported SFChronicle.com.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What is Beacon?

    Beacon is a platform for funding journalism. We've worked with hundreds of journalists and tens of thousands of readers to fund important stories from around the world.

  • How does Beacon work?

    Journalists create crowdfunding pages on Beacon, outlining a reporting project they have planned. You decide whether the project deserves funding by making a pledge.

  • How is my pledge used?

    Beacon pays out journalists directly. Journalists use your funding to cover the costs of reporting and producing a final story, which they'll share with you.

  • Where is the journalism published?

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Stories about The Faces Behind the H-1B Debate need to be told

Help The San Francisco Chronicle bring them to BEACON. At $15,000, The San Francisco Chronicle can provide sustainable reporting on the topic you won't get anywhere else.

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