The Justice Department warned employers Monday not to discriminate against U.S. workers by over-hiring foreign workers under the H-1B visa program.

Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Rights Division Tom Wheeler said in a release that the Justice Department will "not tolerate employers misusing the H-1B visa process to discriminate against U.S. workers."

"U.S. workers should not be placed in a disfavored status, and the department is wholeheartedly committed to investigating and vigorously prosecuting these claims," he said.

The department is starting the process of accepting H-1B visa petitions for the next fiscal year. Last year, the cap of 85,000 was reached less than a week after the application period began.

An H-1B visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows U.S. employees to temporarily employ foreign workers in a specialty occupations in the science and information technology fields.

President Trump slammed H-1B visas early in his campaign, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions has long targeted the program.

"It's simply wrong to think that we're in a totally open world and that any American with a job can be replaced if somebody in the world is willing to take a job for less pay," Sessions told the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing.