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US President Donald Trump issues proclamation to suspend H-1B, other visas till 2020

US President Donald Trump on Monday (June 22) issued a proclamation to suspend issuing of H-1B and other foreign work visas for the rest of 2020. The H-1B visa is very popular among IT professionals in India. Justifying his move, the US president said that the suspension of these visas will help millions of Americans who have lost their jobs due to coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.

Image Courtesy Zee News

US President Donald Trump on Monday (June 22) issued a proclamation to suspend issuing of H-1B and other foreign work visas for the rest of 2020. The H-1B visa is very popular among IT professionals in India. Justifying his move, the US president said that the suspension of these visas will help millions of Americans who have lost their jobs due to coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.

Notably, Trump deicded to issue the proclamation, that comes into effect on June 24, despite opposition by various business organisations, lawmakers and human rights bodies.

Trump’s decision is going to have a direct impact on several Indian IT professionals and several American and Indian firms who were issued H-1B visas for the fiscal year 2021 beginning October 1.

“In the administration of our Nation’s immigration system, we must remain mindful of the impact of foreign workers on the United States labour market, particularly in the current extraordinary environment of high domestic unemployment and depressed demand for labour,” said the proclamation issued by Trump.

Trump said in his proclamation that the overall unemployment rate in the US jumped four times between February and May of 2020 and millions of Americans are still jobless.

“American workers compete against foreign nationals for jobs in every sector of our economy, including against millions of aliens who enter the United States to perform temporary work. Temporary workers are often accompanied by their spouses and children, many of whom also compete against American workers,” Trump said. 

“Under ordinary circumstances, properly administered temporary worker programmes can provide benefits to the economy. But under the extraordinary circumstances of the economic contraction resulting from the COVID-19 outbreak, certain non-immigrant visa programmes authorising such employment pose an unusual threat to the employment of American workers,” he added.

According to Trump, over 17 million United States jobs were lost between February and April of 2020 in industries in which employers are interested in hiring workers tied to H-2B nonimmigrant visas.

“During this same period, more than 20 million United States workers lost their jobs in key industries where employers are currently requesting H-1B and L workers to fill positions,” he said.

“Also, the May unemployment rate for young Americans, who compete with certain J non-immigrant visa applicants, has been particularly high — 29.9 per cent for 16-19 year olds, and 23.2 per cent for the 20-24 year old group.  The entry of additional workers through the H-1B, H-2B, J, and L non-immigrant visa programmes, therefore, presents a significant threat to employment opportunities for Americans affected by the extraordinary economic disruptions caused by the COVID-19 outbreak,” noted Trump.

News Credit ZEE News

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