Trump to seek changes in visa program to encourage hiring Americans

Paterniano Del Favero
Aprile 20, 2017

The US president added that the visa program to bring in the best of the worldwide workforce "should include only the most skilled and highest-paid applicants and should never ever be used to replace American workers".

KENOSHA, Wis. - President Trump came to Wisconsin's tool manufacturer Snap-on Inc. on Tuesday to tout manufacturing and sign an executive order as part of his "Buy American, Hire American" agenda. "These "Buy American, Hire American" initiatives will stimulate economic and wage growth, while ensuring that our government is using high quality products that are Made in the U.S.A".

The new order asks the four federal departments of labour, justice, homeland security and state to crack down on alleged "fraud and abuse" in the immigration system in order to protect American workers.

"They [H1-Bs] should be given to the most skilled and highest-paid applicants and not be used to replace Americans", Trump said.

The H-1B visa programme allows numerous country's biggest tech firms and other multinationals to bring foreign workers to the USA, but federal bodies will now be instructed to crack down on abuse of the programme.

Hundreds of companies issue H-1B visas. The program is used to bring highly skilled foreign workers to the United States.

"We are finally standing up for our workers and our companies", Trump said.

"Right now, H-1B visas are being awarded in a totally random lottery, and that's wrong".

What's an H-1B visa? "It should be about value added and contribution", said Sam Wolf, president of Vanderbilt College Republicans. Trump has turned over management of his business empire to his two adult sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, and says he will have no contact with them about their business decisions.

The number of applications for H-1B visas fell to 199,000 this year from 236,000 in 2016, according U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

The executive order will also focus on reviewing waivers in free-trade agreements and whether they allow foreign firms to undermine American companies in the global government procurement market. The executive order will make reforms to raise the bar for foreign workers and will select only highly-skilled applicants.

Trump said reform of the H-1B visa scheme was long overdue.

"We're encouraged that this is an important first step".

But it's important to note when it comes to buying American, this new executive order specifically affects the federal government, not individual businesses.

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