As of February 22, DOL certified H-2B petitions for 42,802 workers. DHS is likely to announce that the cap has been met any day now. This means that those businesses who were sophisticated users and submitted on 1/1/18 to DOL were not rewarded on a first come first serve basis and were instead lumped in with other applications that DOL received in subsequent days. This also means that many of our constituents who submitted to DOL early and therefore should have been first in line at DHS, were not given any priority and could have lost out on visas that instead went to businesses who applied on 1/2/18 or even 1/3/18. The demand for the H-2B program outweighs the supply by roughly three to four times. Whether you will be fortunate enough to receive an approved visa petition from USCIS or not, we need all hands on deck the next three weeks in order to secure cap relief in the FY 18 Omnibus. Whether that comes as the Returning Worker Exemption or a set number of additional Visas, we need relief and we need it now!
What can you do to fix this? Speak up!
It is imperative that you ask that your Congressman make a personal request to Speaker Ryan, Majority Leader McCarthy, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte and House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen to include H-2B cap relief in the upcoming FY 18 Omnibus. This same request should be made of your Senators. Your Senators should reach out to Senators Mitch McConnell, John Cornyn, Thad Cochran (or his Chief of Staff Bruce Evans) and Chuck Grassley to include H2B cap relief in the upcoming FY 18 Omnibus.
Click here for a template letter you can use to send to the staffers in your members’ offices.
For any questions, comments, or concerns, please contact EDA’s Director of Government Relations, Alexis Strieker, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 636.349.6220