Republican Party Favours Reforming U.S. Guest Workers Programme

Wednesday, 20 July 2016, 11:36 Hrs
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CLEVELAND: The Republican party has favoured reforming the US' guest workers programmes, which include H-1B visas, and also indicated a drastic reduction in the green cards being issued every year that could have a major implication on Indian IT professionals.

"In light of both current needs and historic practice, we urge the reform of our guest worker programmes to eliminate fraud, improve efficiency and ensure they serve the national interest," said the Republican platform, which was approved by the party leadership yesterday during its ongoing convention here.

"In light of the alarming levels of unemployment and underemployment in this country, it is indefensible to continue offering lawful permanent residence to more than one million foreign nationals every year," the platform said.

Currently, Indians have the longest waiting list for green cards. In case of any reduction in the number of such cards being issued every year, that might further delay the process.

However, the platform, which talks in details about the immigration policy does not specifically mention about the H-1B visa programme but the language on guest workers is seen as a move to reform the H-1B visas system.

Donald Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, has been against increase in H-1B visa and has also called for increasing the salary of those coming to the US on H-1B visas.

The platform said the Supreme Court has correctly recognised that states have the constitutional authority to take steps to reduce illegal immigration.

"We condemn the Obama Administration's lawsuits against states that are seeking to reinforce federal law. We support the right of the states to enact laws deterring illegal aliens from residing within their states," it said.

"From its beginning, our country has been a haven of refuge and asylum. That should continue - but with major changes. Asylum should be limited to cases of political, ethnic or religious persecution. As the Director of the FBI has noted, it is not possible to vet fully all potential refugees.

"To ensure our national security, refugees who cannot be carefully vetted cannot be admitted to the country, especially those whose homelands have been the breeding grounds for terrorism," the platform said.

While the platform calls for deportation of illegal immigrants, it praises the role of legal immigrants.

"The greatest asset of the American economy is the American worker. Our immigration system must protect American working families and their wages, for citizens and legal immigrants alike, in a way that will improve the economy," it said.

"Just as immigrant labour helped build our country in the past, today's legal immigrants are making vital contributions in every aspect of national life. Their industry and commitment to American values strengthens our economy, enriches our culture, and enables us to better understand and more effectively compete with the rest of the world," the platform said.
"In a time of terrorism, drug cartels, human trafficking, and criminal gangs, the presence of millions of unidentified individuals in this country poses grave risks to the safety and sovereignty of the United States. Our highest priority, therefore, must be to secure our borders and all ports of entry and to enforce our immigration laws," it said.

"That is why we support building a wall along our southern border and protecting all ports of entry. The border wall must cover the entirety of the southern border and must be sufficient to stop both vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

"We insist upon workplace enforcement of verification systems so that more jobs can be available to all legal workers," the platform said.

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Source: PTI