H1B Visa Ban: American Businesses Slap Legal Action Against President Trump
As per the reports, various big U.S. business groups sued the Trump administration soliciting to remove the immigration restrictions imposed on H-1B visas issued to highly skilled workers with expertise in specialty fields.
How Did This Happen?
On Tuesday, a lawsuit is filed in federal court in San Francisco against the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department.
The lawsuit claims that President Donald Trump exceeded his authority last month when he temporarily halted access to several employment-based visas, in turn affecting hundreds of thousands of people who seek to work in the U.S.
The list of plaintiffs includes the National Association of Manufacturers, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Retail Federation.
Why The Lawsuit?
According to Chamber Chief Executive Officer Thomas Donohue, the plaintiffs seek to overturn “these sweeping and unlawful immigration restrictions that are an unequivocal ‘not welcome’ sign to the engineers, executives, IT experts, doctors, nurses, and other critical workers who help drive the American economy,”.
“Our industry should be laser-focused on leading our recovery and renewal, but these visa restrictions will hand other countries a competitive advantage because they will drive talented individuals away from the United States,” said Linda Kelly, the NAM Senior Vice President and General Counsel.
What Does White House Say?
So far, Homeland Security, State and the White House haven’t responded to requests for comment on the suit.
This was the effect of Trump’s June 22 order repealing entire visa categories for temporary workers.
Further, “inflicting severe economic harm on a wide range of American businesses across all economic sectors,” as per the complaint.
According to them, it exceeds presidential authority, so federal departments and officials can’t implement or enforce it.
As per the lawsuit, though Trump cited the coronavirus pandemic, his order doesn’t bear a “rational relationship” to the problem, which seeks a court order finding the restrictions illegal and blocking them.
Here, Chamber is a longtime supporter of high-skilled immigration and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA, this basically provides legal status for some migrants who entered the country as children.
With the president’s proclamation, it freezes the new H-1B and H-4 visas, used by technology workers and their families, along with the L visas for intracompany transfers and most of the J visas for work- and study-abroad programs, including au pairs, through the end of the year.
according to the lawsuit, there are over 580,000 foreign workers with H-1B visas in specialized jobs in the U.S.
Out of them, over 160,000 L visas were issued in 2019 for executives, managers and employees with special experience and their dependents.
While around 300,000 exchange visitors enter the U.S. annually on J visas.