It’s well known that manufacturers are facing a skills gap and need access to skilled talent to innovate and retain competitiveness. While developing the domestic pipeline of skilled labor is the utmost priority for manufacturers, we are still in need of global talent to remain competitive and grow the economy.
As it stands today, each nation has access to no more than 7% of the total green cards the United States issues on an annual basis – however individuals with highly skilled talent in demand are not equally distributed globally. This creates significant barriers for manufacturers, whose options for maintaining and promoting valued employees are limited by this arbitrary cap. By phasing out the per-country limits, equally-qualified visa applicants would be considered on a first come-first served basis and employers would have greater flexibility to keep talented individuals in the US.
A solution to this problem exists in H.R. 3012, the “Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2011,” which amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to phase out and eliminate the per country limits for employment based visas and places more emphasis on employer demand. The bill is being considered by the House today. We hope that it will be passed as a good step toward developing the workforce that manufacturers need.
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