The Office of Global Michigan strongly opposes President Trump’s recent Executive Order further restricting the U.S. immigration system. The newly-signed order blocks – through the end of the year – visas for a variety of guest workers. The order covers H-1B, H-2B, J-1, and L visas. These visa categories often include scientists, engineers, technology experts and non-agricultural seasonal employees.
This halt on temporary work visas undercuts Michigan’s economy specifically attacking industries that rely on these workers. Our automotive and high-tech industries that rely on high-skilled foreign workers. Our tourism industry that relies on seasonal workers to supplement their workforce and meet the demands of tourists visiting our great State. Our many international companies such as Ford, GM, Whirlpool and Kellogg who may transfer executives, managers or employees with specialized knowledge to either help start up a new U.S. subsidiary or as part of the company’s normal course of business. And, our cultural industry benefiting from the contribution of exchange visitors on work study programs.
These non-immigrant visas are designed to help support and grow our economy. During the last economic recovery, it is estimated that 700,000 American jobs were created by high-skilled foreign workers. Specifically, it is estimated that Michigan gained nearly 5,000 jobs from recent H-1B workers. The repercussions of this sweeping executive order will be felt across Michigan’s economy. As the World moves forward, even during a pandemic, in making necessary investments in innovation and technology, this will hinder our State’s ability to require the necessary talent to do the same.
Michigan has a rich history of welcoming immigrants from around the World and Governor Whitmer has affirmed her commitment to Michigan remaining a “Welcoming State." The Office of Global Michigan will continue to work with our partners to ensure immigrants, refugees, new Americans and our global residents are an integral part of our community.
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