Obama Administration Immigration Fix Not Likely to Affect Guest Worker Programs
Friday, August 22, 2014
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
WASHINGTON, D.C. – As reported in the August PLNA e-News, the Obama Administration is contemplating a series of administrative actions to achieve some of what Congress was unable to do with immigration reform.
Unfortunately, it appears that those administrative changes will not affect agriculture directly or the guest worker programs that support nurseries (H2-A) and landscape contractors (H2-B).
While official information coming out of the internal deliberations within the White House are scant, the changes being contemplated seem to focus exclusively on the legal status of those 11 to 12 million immigrants who are here undocumented.
But some in the agriculture community are not concerned, fearing that getting administrative concessions now from the Administration may make it more difficult to get permanent legislative fixes down the road. They are concerned that Republican legislators could harbor a grudge against any sector benefitting from the Administration’s immigration largesse.
Nonetheless, simply reducing the raw number of undocumented immigrants here in the country could reduce the legal jeopardy that employers find themselves in when hiring. Employers now must determine the legal status of job applicants when faced with fake ID’s that are indistinguishable from the real thing.
It’s expected that any announcement of what steps the Administration will take with regard to immigration measures will come after Labor Day, but before the November mid-term elections.
So stay tuned…