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US Congress presses for more migrant workers to come in through H-2B visas

Posted on May 31, 2016
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The United States Congress is mulling measures to increase the number of foreign nationals on H-2B visas to work in low-wage jobs in the US.

Members of both Republican and Democratic parties in the US are campaigning to retain measures that increased the number of temporary worker visas fourfold in 2015. This is one of the few issues that has seen both parties arriving at a consensus, with nine members of the House urging the Appropriations Committee in the second week of May through a letter that the number of temporary visas be kept at the same level as last year.

Providing overseas workers legal means to work in professions such as housekeeping, seafood processing and landscaping, H-2B visas had a ceiling of 264,000 during the budget negotiations of 2015. It was raised from the earlier limit of 66,000, a number which business promoters felt was unusually low as it could hurt the industries in the United States that depend mainly on the foreign workforce. The H-2B visa holders are eligible to stay for a period of up to three years.

This fresh pressure comes in the wake of the ongoing presidential election period in America where immigration has taken precedence over other issues for both the political parties.

Regardless of who wins the elections, it definitely provides Indians wanting to work in the US an opportunity to migrate on a temporary basis with H-2B visa.

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