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Additional 2022 H-2B Visas Available with New Union Notification Requirement

The announcement includes a provision requiring construction employers, among others, to provide written notification of the job opportunity to the nearest AFL-CIO office and requesting assistance in recruiting qualified U.S. workers for the job opportunity.

On May 16, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) announced the availability of an additional 35,000 H-2B visas for the second half of fiscal year 2022. The H-2B program allows U.S. employers who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary (seasonal) nonagricultural jobs. Congress has typically capped the number of the temporary visas at 66,000 a year – 33,000 for summer and for winter.

The announcement also includes enhanced recruitment efforts and a provision that would require employers seeking visas for occupations with high unionization, such as construction, “provide written notification of the job opportunity to the nearest American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL–CIO) office covering the area of intended employment, by providing a copy of the job order and requesting assistance in recruiting qualified U.S. workers for the job opportunity.”

Given the widespread worker shortages impacting the construction industry, AGC is concerned of any attempts to target and limit the industry’s ability to access the H-2B program. AGC will continue to advocate for immigration reforms that help address construction workforce shortages.

 


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