Increasing Difficulty Obtaining Immigrant Visas
While the Trump administration has been fighting hard to convince the nation of an urgent need of a wall at the US-Mexico border, statistics are showing that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the State Department have been heightening screening and vetting of visa applications for the past 2 years.
This administration’s policies are negatively impacting family members, international students, and foreign workers visas. In the latter instance, the rates of RFEs and H1-B visa denials have significantly increased. According to an analysis of new State Department data by the National Foundation for American Policy the number of permanent residence seekers denied has increased by 39% and Request For Evidence (RFEs) have been issued for about 60% of H1B applications submitted in the first quarter of this fiscal year. It is however possible for immigrants to appeal the denials and prove their eligibility but by doing so it delays the process..
USCIS has released memos facilitating the immediate denials of visa applications without having to request RFEs again and thus, accelerating deportation proceedings of all those whose extensions or renewals had been denied.
For those who believe in the great contributions of immigrants – like Mark Roberts, CEO of TechServe Alliance – they believe the goal of these memos is to “ discourage much needed legal immigration and discourage businesses from having work performed in the US”. Now, for those who actually want to see big cuts in the immigration budget, they believe that immigrants come “to take jobs from American workers and accuse companies of taking advantage of the programs in order to pay less for labor”.
By hardening all these immigration policies, the Trump administration kept its promise when they said they “would roll back” all the immigration policies passed under the Obama administration. It is now very hard for foreign workers, their spouses, or international students to legally come to the US and or maintain their status.