Saturday, 21 October, 2017

US Allows More Seasonal Workers as Trump Pushes 'Hire American'

US intensifies clampdown on Nigerians, Brazilians, others with overstayed visas US to admit 15000 additional temporary workers this year: DHS
Hilda Schwartz | 19 July, 2017, 00:38

In the past, Mr Trump claimed he had to hire foreign workers for Mar-a-Lago because American workers were not available during busy tourist seasons in Florida.

"Expanding the H-2B program without reforming it to improve protections and increase wages for migrant workers will essentially allow unscrupulous employers to carve out an even larger rights-free zone in the low-wage labor market", said Daniel Costa, director of immigration law and policy research at the institute.

"We're talking about American businesses that are at risk of suffering irreparable harm if they don't get additional H-2B workers", the official said.

The move is meant to avert "irreparable harm" to businesses facing manpower shortages, according to Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly.

Many businesses and members of congress have pleaded with Kelly to issue the visas, citing an urgent need for workers. The H-2B Workforce Coalition gave voice to the sector, welcoming the "minimal relief" granted them by the Federal government.

The DHS blamed Congress for delaying the decision being made about the hiring of seasonal workers and pushing it into summer and announced that they are "committed to protecting USA workers and strengthening the integrity of the United States immigration system".

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The DHS press release went on to say that it received enough visa applications in mid-March to fill out the year's quota.

The temporary visas had previously been capped at 66,000 for the fiscal year. "We're asking these businesses to attest that if they do not get additional workers they will be harmed, so this does help with American businesses continuing to prosper". "The administration's decision to exceed the 66,000 cap not only undermines struggling American workers, but betrays unequivocal promises President Trump made in his campaign", FAIR President Dan Stein charged at the time.

President Donald Trump has said he's going to set more limits on the H-1B visa program, which allows tens of thousands of technology workers into the U.S. each year.

"If there aren't enough workers to come in here legally, we're going to have a weak economy, and we're going to lose segments of the economy we have that already depend on these workers", Hutt said.

But Congress did not renew the returnees exemption when it expired last fall, effectively curbing the number of available visas. "The increase represents a 45 percent bump from the number of H-2B visas normally issued for the second half of the fiscal year, said senior Homeland Security officials in a call with reporters" notes the Washington Post. Hance said there is a shortage now.

The development comes as US President Donald Trump has declared this week as "Made In America" week and vowed to stand up for the US workers.

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