Legal employment-based immigration petitioners are defined as not being competing with American citizens for job opportunities by a very strict USCIS process including the prevailing wage test, the 2-month recruiting test, etc.
They fill in positions that either American citizens choose not to fill or there're not sufficient American citizens to fill up these positions.
Without EB immigrants, these jobs could have been permanently outsourced overseas, together with those closely-related jobs.
It's a paradox that they de facto make many jobs stay inside U.S. Moreover, they possess the experience and skills that help U.S. companies to be globally competitive.
They should NOT be heavily backlogged for abiding by U.S. laws, while sympathy is given only to undocumented immigrants.
Response to Petition
By Felicia Escobar
Thank you for making your voice heard and for participating in the We the People platform.
The Obama Administration is deeply committed to fixing our broken immigration system and building a 21st century immigration system that meets the needs of an economy built to last. The President has consistently called on Congress to work with him in a bipartisan manner to pass legislation that recognizes the basic concept that we are a nation of laws but we're also a nation of immigrants that have continually strengthened America's economy and culture. The Administration believes that it is necessary to restore responsibility and accountability to the broken immigration system so that it works for all Americans and employers, workers, and families who interact with the immigration system.
This Administration recognizes that the United States has been enriched throughout our history by a steady stream of hardworking and talented people from all over the world. These generations of immigrants have helped make America the engine of the global economy. However, because the immigration reform the President outlined in a detailed blueprint requires changes to existing laws, Congressional action is needed to move forward -- requiring Democrats, Republicans and Independents to come together to pass a bill through both chambers of Congress.
The challenges we must tackle and the solutions we must implement are detailed in the President's Blueprint for Immigration Reform (PDF), including potential changes to annual caps placed on employment-based immigration. As stated in the blueprint, the President supports:
"Making reforms to the existing employment- and family-based immigration system, including exempting immediate relatives of U.S. citizens from annual caps placed on legal immigration, and changing the categories and per country caps put in place to ensure successful high-skilled immigrants are able to remain in the U.S. permanently and U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents are able to reunite with their families more quickly."
In the meantime, the Administration has made it a priority to work within the existing law to improve the application process for employers, workers, and families. We have reduced backlogs, introduced a common-sense one-stop portal with information for employers and employees interested in visa programs, and launched an Entrepreneurs in Residence program at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to ensure that its policies and practices align with current business realities. At the same time, our foreign temporary worker programs are also designed to protect American workers. Recruitment requirements, which are required by law, ensure that U.S. workers have a meaningful opportunity to obtain jobs for which they are qualified; and paying foreign workers a prevailing wage maintains a level playing field for employers and guards against the undercutting of U.S. workers' wages.
You can continue to act and help the Administration make lasting change to our immigration system. President Obama has called for a national conversation on immigration reform that builds a bipartisan consensus to fix our broken immigration system so it works for America's 21st century economy. But he can't do it alone. Over the last several months, dozens of communities have answered his call, holding meetings with local business leaders, faith leaders, law enforcement leaders and others to discuss the changes necessary to create a 21st century immigration system. The Obama Administration is asking you and other Americans to continue the conversation in your community by hosting a roundtable. Find out more at www.whitehouse.gov/immigration.
Thank you again for your petition and interest in building a 21st Century immigration system. We greatly appreciate your response and hope that you continue to share your views with the Administration.
Felicia Escobar is Senior Policy Director for Immigration