More H-2B Visas Coming for Temp Workers

Feb. 15, 2022
Homeland Security increases visas by 20,000 to help U.S. employers who cannot fill temporary jobs.

With unemployment low and a worker shortage crippling many businesses, the Dept. of Homeland Security said it will issue 20,000 additional H-2B visas for temporary nonagricultural workers during the first half of 2022, and there are bipartisan calls in Congress asking for twice that number.

H-2B visas allow foreigners who are not seeking permanent immigration to take certain temporary jobs, especially during peak times. They typically include seasonal employees, such as cooks at resort hotels, camp counselors and ski instructors. But visa holders also can fill seasonal or peak-load situations in manufacturing plants, and some food processors use such employees.

The visas are aimed at helping U.S. employers that face irreparable harm if they cannot get additional workers on or before March 31, the departments of Homeland Security and Labor said in a statement reported by Reuters.

The employer must show that there are not enough U.S. workers who are willing, qualified and available to carry out the job, that the contract will be temporary, that U.S. workers will not be affected and that the invitation will only be made once and per season.

The worker must have a job offer in the U.S., fit the skills for the job and commit to returning to their country of origin before the visa expires. They can stay in this country for at most three years.

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