Donald Trump view on Immigration Policy: Impact of Trump on H1B Visa Jobs

Donald trump's view on immigration Plan: Trump on H1B Visa Immigration Policy Summary

Donald Trump’s View on Immigration and Immigration Policy Summary

Donald Trump Immigration policy specifically focused on illegal immigration to the United States, and was used as a signature issue of U.S. President Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. The policy brief assesses the major policy shifts that have occurred since January 2017 via executive orders, agency memorandum, and changes to existing programs and practice. His proposed reforms and remarks about this issue generated much publicity.

After becoming the US President, Donald Trump immigration plan was in policy and he took many actions as promised in his campaigns such as elimination of illegal immigrants, build a substantial wall on the United States-Mexico border, imposed a travel ban to prohibit issuing visas to citizens of seven largely-Muslim countries which was revised three times and also attempted to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals DACA program, but a legal injunction has allowed the policy to continue. He imposed a “zero tolerance” policy to arrest all illegal immigrants at the border, which resulted in separating children from their families. Tim Cook and 58 other CEOs of major American companies warned of harm from Donald Trump’s view on immigration policy.

Trump on H-1B Visa:

He expressed support to restrict and revoke work visas for foreign international workers mainly H-1B. He support “limits on legal immigration and guest-worker visas” including a “pause” on granting green cards. Trump’s proposals regarding H-1B visas frequently changed throughout his presidential campaign, but as of late July 2016, he appeared to oppose the H-1B visa program.

In his first State of the Union address on January 30, 2018 Trump outlined his administration’s Four Pillars for Immigration Reform:

1) A path to citizenship for DREAMers;

2) Increased border security funding;

3) Ending the diversity visa lottery; and

4) Restrictions on family-based immigration.

The Four Pillars reinforce Trump’s campaign slogan to “Buy American, Hire American” and 2017 Executive Order by the same name and tracks with previously outlined Donald Trump’s immigration policy priorities.

US President Donald Trump have announced a new US visa immigration policy that makes the procedure of issuing H-1B visas to those to be employed at one or more third-party work-sites very tough thereby sticking to his poll promise “Buy American, Hire American.” The proposal was circulated in the form of an internal memo by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to end the provision of allowing extensions to H-1B visa holders whose applications for green card had been accepted.

The new policy requires that a firm go an extra mile to prove it H-1B employee at a third party worksite. The policy memorandum also states that employers must provide contracts and itineraries for employees who will work at a third-party location.

So, what steps have Donald Trump Immigration Plan taken towards reducing H-1B jobs for foreign workers?

  • A policy change to rid their right of work for spouses of H-1B visa holders has entered its final review, with senior leaders in the Department of Homeland Security moving toward approval, according to a new court filing. This will affect those who hold the H-4 visa, a work permit for spouses and under-21 children of H-1B workers. However, according to the Homeland Security, “certain H-4 spouses” will be targeted by the new rule but it is still not clear if all spouses of H-1B holders will be banned from working.
  • Earlier this year, University of Tennessee published a report according to which 100,000 H-1B spouses would lose their jobs as a result of the new policy and 93% of those women are from India, “who held successful jobs and often advanced degrees in their native country before coming to the U.S.A.” H-1B holders whose spouses aren’t able to work may leave the U.S., the researchers said.
  • The executive order has also asked for the “strict enforcement” of laws governing the entry to the US of labor from overseas. This is done with an intention to create higher wages and employment rates for US workers.
  • The order will also call on government departments to “take prompt action to crack down on fraud and abuse” in the immigration system.

These new guidance were introduced weeks before the beginning of H-1B visas filling season, which is expected to be April 2nd for the fiscal year 2019 beginning October 1, 2018. The guidance further states that in order for an H-1B petition involving a third-party worksite to be approved, the petitioner must show by a preponderance of evidence that, among other things:

  • The beneficiary will be employed in a specialty occupation; and
  • The employer will maintain an employer-employee relationship with the beneficiary for the duration of the requested validity period.

When H-1B beneficiaries are placed at third-party worksites, petitioners must provide evidence that they have specific and non-speculative qualifying assignments in a specialty occupation for that beneficiary for the entire time requested on the petition. While an H-1B petition may be approved for up to three years, USCIS will, in its discretion, generally limit the approval period to the length of time demonstrated that the beneficiary will be placed in non-speculative work and during which the petitioner will maintain the requisite employer-employee relationship.

Impact of Trump on H1B Visa Workers Jobs:

How Donald Trump’s presidency affects foreign workers in USA?

  • It is now taking an ample of amount of time to apply for H-1B visas for immigrants which can hurt their business as they won’t be able to devote too much time on their occupations. It has also led to an increase in the cost of associated with hiring through the program.
  • According to Jason Gerlis, the North American regional director at global financial consulting firm TMF Group, his clients who apply for H-1B visas are growing concerned that the U.S. is no longer an attractive place to operate, especially for tech companies.
  • It is also creating an emotional and psychological impact on the minds of foreign workers. Those who are applying for jobs are much more nervous about the process and the existing H-1B visa workers are worried that they will be kicked out of the country.

How will it affect H-1B visa workers and international students in USA till 2019?

  1. Fewer Students applying to American Colleges – According to the National Science Board, undergraduate enrollment in the US fell 2% between fall 2016 and fall 2017, and graduate enrollment declined by 6% in science and engineering fields and by 5% in the remaining fields during the same period. This brings a bad news to the American Universities since international students tend to pay higher fees than their American counterparts.
  2. Jobs for International Students Declining – According to The National Association of Colleges and Employers, the percentage of employers that will hire international students hit a new low in 2018. According to the non-profit’s annual Job Outlook report, 23.4% of employer respondents indicated they will hire international students, down from 27.5% last year and a high of 34.2% in 2015.
  3. Canada receiving more tech workers – The number of skilled workers in computer-related fields that received invitations from the Canadian government to apply for permanent residence under its Express Entry Program surged in 2017 from the years before. Indians received 42% of the 86,022 invitations sent out last year, followed by China (9%), Nigeria (6%) and Pakistan (4%). Admissions for Indian citizens rose from 9,584 in 2016 to 26,340 in 2017.

What’s the future of H1B and OPT jobs under Trump presidency?

International students with Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) degrees who work under the extended Optional Practical Training program are now required to work at their employers’ headquarters and not at a third-party client site, as was allowed before. This change suddenly appeared on the USCIS website in January without any prior announcement.

Employers, who hire international students straight out of school, without having to wait for a decision on an H-1B petition, won’t be able to do so now.

The future of H-1 and foreign workers will be more on skilled professional specific and merit based immigration .  A complete shutdown on H-1B visa is not economically profitable for USA. There can be major changes in visa rules for H-1B visa workers and H-1B sponsoring employers. The hiring process of international workers will be valid legal process. H-1b Dependent Employers and Immigrants or Foreign Workers may go certain policy rule amendments that will not be easy. There is no harm if you are a legal immigrant in USA. International workers on OPT and H-1B have no choice but to follow the immigration policies. Most of the Big Companies requires a lot of highly skilled foreign workers and so they will continue sponsoring work sponsorship.  So it’s unlikely that the visa program is ever going to be scrapped entirely.