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Letter to the Editor, July 9, 2020: Restricting immigration hurts economy, families

Letter to the Editor, July 9, 2020: Restricting immigration hurts economy, families

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Restricting immigration

hurts economy, families

Editor, Times-Dispatch;

President Donald Trump’s recent proclamation restricting H-1B and other work visa holders from entering the United States until the end of 2020 will do more harm than good. The U.S. economy will suffer without talented and highly skilled foreign nationals in the workforce. The majority of H-1B holders entering the U.S. are performing skills that cannot be found here. Ask any technology company why it hires H-1B workers. It routinely is easier and cheaper to hire a U.S. worker, but companies that strive to be the best want to hire the most talented workers and therefore utilize the H-1B visa to hire foreign workers who have the required skills to perform the job. Additionally, the technology sector that utilizes the H-1B visa program has been minimally affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Furthermore, the H-1B visa is used for many other positions in important sectors, including research, medical and the financial arena.

The proclamation also indirectly creates a ban for foreign nationals entering or exiting the United States since it makes obtaining a visa — which, in effect, is a travel document — impossible until Dec. 31 (or thereafter). Families are being separated because of Trump’s proclamation.

America is built and thrives on having productive foreign nationals in this country. There needs to be a more informed public discussion of the overwhelming benefits of our immigration programs, rather than a few samples of occasional abuses that are found in any program. And for these, we need reform. I feel confident there is a bipartisan solution to these issues.

Andrea F. Rahal.

Immigration Attorney.

Richmond.

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