NATIONAL – The Trump administration’s last visa freeze entered into force on Wednesday, which will have consequences for certain foreign workers.
What you need to know
- Legal residents, people with a work visa are not affected
- The Trump administration said it was doing this to employ American citizens
- According to the employer, a move could affect Central Florida’s future as a tech hub
It will affect foreign workers attempting to enter the US with H-1B, H2-B (seasonal non-agricultural jobs) H4, J and L. The Executive Authority will approve those visas for the remainder of the temporary ban.
Legal residents and people already in the country with a work visa are not affected.
Tech companies such as Google, Apple and Amazon rely on H-1B employees.
According to US Citizenship and Immigration Services, there are more than 2,300 companies using H-1B employees; 166 of those companies are only in Orlando.
Carlos Carbonell said his technology company, Echo Interaction Group, planned to bring an H-1B employee to Central Florida so that the employee can work in Orlando rather than remotely in Brazil.
“It’s daunting,” said Carbonell. “Most companies actually do it because it is the most qualified person at the time with very unique skills that cannot be found anywhere in that particular region.”
The Trump administration said it did to enlist U.S. citizens and protect wages for U.S. workers as businesses continue to reopen after the corona virus pandemic.
Nayef Mubarak, an immigration attorney at Murabak Law, said there are already laws in place to do that.
“We have to go through the Ministry of Labor to determine the foreign national’s wages so that the employer cannot opt for a lower salary,” said Mubarak.
He also said it could affect whether foreign companies move to the state in the future because L-1 visas are affected. L-1 visas allow foreign managers and executives to remain in the country.
Carbonell said it could impact Central Florida’s future as a tech hub.
“We need to attract the best possible worker wherever they come from and let them live here,” says Carbonell. “I think such executive orders are a major barrier to making that happen.”
Carbonell said his employee should continue to work remotely for the time being as he works with immigration attorneys to help take him to the U.S.