On December 1, 2016, The Buffalo News published an opinion piece written by Berardi Immigration Law’s Managing Partner, Rosanna Berardi. The piece was published in the “Another Voice” section of the newspaper. The article focuses on the H-1B visa program, one of the employment-based visas that president-elect Donald Trump has proposed changes to.
For those who may be unfamiliar, the H-1B visa is granted to foreign nationals who possess a bachelor’s degree or higher and have a professional job offer in the United States. Each year, Congress limits the number of H-1B visas that are issued. Currently, the number issued is 85,000, with 65,000 issued to those with bachelor’s degrees and an additional 20,000 for those with a master’s degree or higher.
President-elect Donald Trump has stated in his immigration proposal that he would like to add a recruitment requirement to find American workers before hiring foreign ones. In the article, Rosanna respectfully disagrees stating, “While on the surface this appears to be a good idea, the U.S. labor market suffers significant shortages in STEM fields. According to the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, economic projections point to a need for approximately one million more STEM professionals than the United States will produce over the next decade at the current rate.”
Donald Trump also plans to increase the prevailing wage for H-1B visas, believing that this will force companies to give entry-level jobs to U.S. workers instead of flying in cheaper labor. However, as Rosanna writes in the article, “According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, there is no verifiable evidence that foreign-born STEM workers adversely affect the wages of American workers. The average STEM worker actually earns slightly more than his or her U.S. counterpart, earning on average $61 more per week.”
Rosanna closes the article by stating, “The H-1B visa program complements U.S. workers, fills employment gaps and is integral to the U.S. economy. Trump and Congress need to address this issue, while also encouraging Americans to pursue STEM-related fields of study. With a few tweaks, the United States can continue to attract and benefit from the best and brightest minds of the world.”
To read the full article, please click here.
Published since 1873, The Buffalo News is the daily newspaper of the Buffalo-Niagara Falls metropolitan area and the top source for up-to-the-minute news coverage.
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