As Congress continues to grapple with the government shut down that has left 800,000 federal workers without paychecks, the members of the Essential Workers Immigration Coalition (EWIC), representing the broad range of American industries outside of the high-skilled and agriculture sectors, would like to express our strong belief that a deal to reopen the government in exchange for border security measures and a resolution to the DACA/TPS crisis is feasible if Congress and the Administration are willing to make the effort that is needed.
Legislative proposals currently being promoted could, in a limited manner, address the important issue of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival status (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) individuals.
The Essential Worker Immigration Coalition (EWIC) was established as a voice to advance balanced immigration reform to meet the needs of the American workforce that is necessary to promote higher levels of economic growth and job creation. As such, we write to express our long-standing views on business immigration and our concern for business and job creation in on-going policy debates.
At the forefront of the current shut-down ending proposal is an immigration border proposal and a limited proposal to help established, productive immigrant workers in TPS and who hold DACA status. The vast majority of these immigrants are hardworking individuals who are contributing to our national economy, our communities and our industries.
Many of these TPS and DACA workers have been contributing to our economy for many years or even a decade or more and have become valued and productive members of the U.S. workforce. Going forward, a policy that recognizes their contribution to U.S. employers and the economy is urgently needed.
It is time to end the government shutdown and pass legislative reforms will serve to help stabilize the U.S. workforce for both workers and employers. Failure to address essential workers in the reform debate will cause turmoil and irreparable harm in industries like construction, healthcare, hospitality, and manufacturing, which are already experiencing workforce shortages of unprecedented severity to meet demand in today’s robust economy.
As you continue to work on options to reopen the government, we urge you to give serious consideration to the broader immigration reform needed to address not only DACA and TPS (of critical importance) but the workforce shortage crisis that left unaddressed will cause turmoil and irreparable harm to our industries and our economy. EWIC looks forward to continuing to work with all involved to find a balanced solution to the nation’s immigration policy problems and American workforce needs.