Published: Mon, July 17, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

US To Allow 15000 Additional Visas For Temporary Workers

US To Allow 15000 Additional Visas For Temporary Workers

The Trump Administration says it has a problem with visa overstays in the country and is now determined to step up enforcement to try to cut down on the violations.

US Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly found after consulting with Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta that there were not enough qualified and willing American workers available to perform temporary nonagricultural work, the department said in a statement.

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Bangor Daily News, however, recently reported that businesses in Bar Harbor, Maine have been scrambling to hire American workers as the H-2b visa program has already met its annual quota of 66,000 (equally split between summer and winter).

Jessica Vaughan, policy studies director at the Centre for Immigration Studies, said those kinds of rates should force a rethink at the State Department, which issues visas, and should spur immigration officials to put more effort into deterring and deporting overstays in the U.S. The businesses are also required to have documents that would prove their need, though they do not have to submit them along with their petition to receive the additional visas.

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Congress gave Kelly authority to authorize additional visas earlier this year and he said in May he planned to grant at least some additional visas.

Businesses who meet specific criteria can apply for H-2B visas to bring over foreign workers to take temporary positions they cannot fill with American workers. "They were part-time jobs".

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And while President Donald Trump has touted a "Hire American" mantra, he's also defended the use of H-2B visas at places like his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. "We do think that fits into the American-first focus of the administration".

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