“The guest worker program is a cornerstone of comprehensive immigration reform,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, chief executive officer of the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC). “The Senate’s move to cut the guest worker program from 400,000 to 200,000 annually, is short-sighted and chokes off legal means to meet employment shortages.”
AGC continues to analyze the bill and has significant concerns about a number of its provisions but also sees the legislation as an opportunity to secure the border, to carefully document who is inside the borders already, and to create a mechanism to accurately and reliably verify the legal employment status of both applicants and current employees.
AGC believes comprehensive immigration reform is vital and must strengthen national security. Any legislation should include: a workable, reliable employment verification process; penalties for employers that are proportionate to the violation; a meaningful guest worker program; avoidance of a new debarment process for immigration violations; a path to legal status for illegal immigrants who are working and contributing to society; and no employer liability for the hiring violations of subcontractors or vendors.
For more information, visit www.agc.org.