Immigration and Temporary Labor

Businesses across the county depend on temporary worker visas

Across the country, American companies rely on immigrant workers to fill seasonal and labor-intensive jobs that cannot otherwise be filled. The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco has found that lowskilled immigrant workers help companies grow and create additional – often higher-paying – job opportunities for Americans.1 In 1986 under President Ronald Reagan, in recognition of the value and need for immigrant workers, two guest worker programs were established – the H-2A for farm workers and H-2B program for non-farm workers. The programs were designed to allow enterprising immigrants to enter the country legally as temporary workers for vital American industries such as agriculture, construction and hospitality. Unfortunately, as currently administered, these visa programs are not designed for businesses to succeed.

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New American Economy is a bipartisan research and advocacy organization fighting for smart federal, state, and local immigration policies that help grow our economy and create jobs for all Americans. More…