House Passes Limited STEM Jobs Bill — National Action Alert

One of the roles of these National Action Alerts, which I’ll post on Tuesdays, is to let you know how a particular vote went. Sometimes (like today) the news is not good, but I’ll also try to indicate how you can help turn things around in the days ahead.

On Friday, the House passed H.R. 6429, also known as the STEM Jobs Act of 2012. The bill was introduced in September by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX).

While H.R. 6429 encourages the retention of high-tech workers who have received degrees in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics from American universities, the bill blocks migration of other immigrants by eliminating the Diversity Visa Immigrant Program. In addition, although it ostensibly provides for increased family reunification by increasing the number of available “V-visas” for family members of STEM beneficiaries, family members are not permitted to work while they wait for a decision on their visa applications.

LIRS and the Obama Administration oppose H.R. 6429, as it does not do enough to increase opportunities for family reunification and it eliminates the Diversity Visa Immigrant Program. H.R. 6429 reduces the entry of a varied and innovative pool of immigrants into American society and does not meet the standards needed for fair and humane immigration reform.

LIRS will be closely monitoring the continuing immigration reform debate, and will keep you updated as we work with you to achieve comprehensive reform. Stay tuned!

Image credit: Diliff

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