How tech giants are responding to the rising inexperienced card backlog

In early August, Amazon’s SVP of human sources, Beth Galetti, penned a weblog submit urging the U.S. Division of Homeland Safety to expedite the processing of employment-based inexperienced playing cards.

The plea was, after all, self-serving — Amazon topped the listing of firms making use of for inexperienced playing cards in 2019 with 1,500 functions, in response to U.S. Division of Labor knowledge. But it surely did serve to highlight that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Providers (USCIS) — the company answerable for issuing inexperienced playing cards — is barreling towards a failure to adjudicate tens of hundreds of functions earlier than a September 30 deadline.

Inexperienced playing cards are extremely wanted. Not like momentary work visas (e.g., H-1Bs), they permit employees to freely swap jobs with out shedding their immigration standing. In response to demand (and political stress), Congress allotted 281,000 employment-based inexperienced playing cards in 2022, up from 262,000 in 2021. (The standard cap is 140,000.) However the pandemic — and restrictive legal guidelines beneath the Trump administration — threw an extra wrench within the largely handbook, paper-driven course of.

U.S. embassies and consular workplaces have been quickly closed, creating an extended queue of appointments to gather fingerprints and images. Annual per-country caps didn’t assist issues — according to the Cato Institute, about 875,000 accredited petitions for inexperienced playing cards have been waitlisted in 2021 due to the boundaries.

This 12 months, the USCIS claims to have taken steps to expedite adjudication, telling Bloomberg Legislation in July that it shifted workers sources to prioritize processing inexperienced playing cards and adopted a “risk-based strategy” to waive interview necessities. But it surely’s unclear whether or not this shall be ample to forestall tens of hundreds of inexperienced playing cards from going unused. As of July 31, the USCIS reported that it had adjudicated round 210,000 functions, leaving over 70,000 to be processed.

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