A U.S. Congressman from Arizona responded Monday to reports that the federal government will dole out 35,000 more temporary worker visas for foreigners to work in the United States.
“The Biden administration has laid down the welcome mat to over two million criminals who have walked across our southern border while tens of thousands of unvetted refugees have been flown in from Afghanistan,” Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ-04) told The Arizona Sun Times. “With millions of Americans including our veterans who are now unemployed, homeless, or living in poverty we need to take care of one another before we allow thousands more to migrate here. That is why I have introduced legislation calling on a pause of migration to America so we can figure out how to put the American people first.”
Gosar is known as in Congress as an immigration hardliner.
The workers will receive H-2B visas that will grant them temporary worker status in the United States.
Specifically, H-2B visas are for low-skilled non-farm workers.
Earlier this year, the federal government issued 20,000 of the same visas.
“Labor Department data shows 81 Arizona businesses filed more than 2,700 H-2B visa petitions in the first half of fiscal 2022, covering everything from landscapers to line cooks and housekeepers to construction workers,” according to The Phoenix Business Journal. “But out of these, only 1,975 applications were approved.”
Typically, 33,000 H-2B visas are granted every six months.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is responsible for allocating the visas.
“These additional H-2B visas will help employers meet the demand for seasonal workers at this most critical time, when there is a serious labor shortage,” said DHS Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas in a statement. “The visas are accompanied by significant worker protections and provide a safe and lawful pathway for individuals to come to the United States and earn wages in jobs that are not filled by American workers.”
“The supplemental H-2B visa allocation consists of 23,500 visas available to returning workers who received an H-2B visa or were otherwise granted H-2B status during one of the last three fiscal years,” according to the statement. “The remaining 11,500 visas are reserved for nationals of El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Haiti, regardless of whether they are returning workers. The semiannual cap of 33,000 visas for the second half of FY 2022 was reached on February 25, 2022.”
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