The Trump Administration Faces Lawsuits Amid Work Visa Restrictions

The U.S. Chamber of Congress, along with several other business groups, has filed suit against the U.S. Department of State and the United States Department of Homeland Security for what it has called an unlawful restriction of work visas. 

According to Katie Clary, in an article appearing on the HR Dive website, the lawsuit was filed on July 21st in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California in San Francisco.  The case, National Association of Manufacturers, et. al, v. United States Department of Homeland Security, protests a proclamation from the Trump Administration issued on June 22nd that refuses to issue H-1B, H-2B, H-4, L-1, L-2, J-1, and J-2 visas. 

Co-plaintiffs in the case include the National Association of Manufacturers, The National Retail Federation, and others. They allege that the Trump Administration’s action prevents them from hiring professional workers from outside the U.S. which is critical to their business operations. These workers include engineers, programmers, doctors, nurses, and scientists.

The proclamation issued by President Trump stated, “American workers compete against foreign nationals for jobs in every sector of our economy, including against millions of aliens who enter the United States to perform temporary work.” The administration further states that “…programs authorizing such employment pose an unusual threat to the employment of American workers.”

While the administration may believe that the limitations on visas may help to lessen the high number of unemployed workers from Coronavirus shutdowns, U.S. businesses allege that it has actually had the opposite effect. 

U.S. Chamber CEO, Thomas Donohue, told HR Dive that the administration’s move would likely push business investment overseas. This, in turn, would severely limit economic growth, and reduce the ability of US businesses to create more jobs.