Top US Congressmen Introduce Bill To Reduce Green Card Backlog


Three influential lawmakers, including Indian-Americans Raja Krishnamoorthi and Pramila Jayapal, have proposed bipartisan legislation to reduce the green card backlog and end employment-based state discrimination. was submitted to the U.S. House of Representatives.

Both bills, if passed and signed into law, would provide relief to thousands of Indian Americans currently waiting decades for green cards or permanent residency. Rep. Rich McCormick was the third lawmaker to introduce the bill on Monday, along with two Indian-Americans.

HR 6542, the bipartisan Immigrant Visa Efficiency and Security Act of 2023, would improve green card eligibility by allowing American employers to focus on hiring immigrants based on merit rather than national origin. It will strengthen the U.S. economy and increase global competitiveness while reducing backlogs, it said in a press release and statement.

The bill would phase out the current 7% per country limit on employment-based immigrant visas, while increasing the 7% per country limit on family sponsor visas to 15%.

“As we work to build the economy of the future, high-skilled workers remain unclaimed on their green cards, unable to fully establish themselves as Americans and contribute more fully to our nation,” Krishnamoorthi said. We cannot allow this to continue as it is.”

“I am proud to work with my colleagues on bipartisan legislation to eliminate country discrimination on employment-based immigrant visas to reduce visa backlogs while strengthening our economy and workforce.” he added.

The employment-based visa system provides permanent residence (or “green cards”) to individuals whose work contributes to U.S. economic growth and increases competitive advantage.

To qualify, the sponsoring employer typically must advertise and demonstrate that it cannot find qualified U.S. workers to fill the position. Thus, although the U.S. employment-based visa system began as “competency-based,” what happens next has nothing to do with ability or skill, and visas are allocated based on the eligible immigrant’s country of origin. said the statement.

Currently, approximately 95% of employment-based immigrants live and work in the United States on temporary visas while waiting for their visa to be issued. It says some of these individuals may remain in temporary status for years, if not decades, because of the caps that apply to their nationality.

The statement said the new phase-in system established in the bipartisan EAGLE Act will help ease the backlog for those who have been waiting the longest.

Similar to the Highly Skilled Immigrant Fairness Act, which passed the House in July 2019, this bill would phase out the 7 percent per-country cap on employment-based immigrant visas. It also increases the 7 percent limit on family-sponsored visas to 15 percent per country.

Similar to the High-Skilled Immigrant Fairness Act, which passed the Senate in December 2020, this bill includes provisions to ensure that no country is excluded from receiving visas while country-specific caps are phased out. It includes a longer transition period of nine years. said.

According to the bill, the bill would strengthen the H-1B temporary visa program and provide individuals with an immigrant visa backlog of two years the option to file a green card application; It will not be approved until a visa becomes available. statement.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)



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