President-Elect Biden Pledges Immigration-Related
Actions in First 100 Days
President-elect Joe Biden has pledged in the first 100 days of
his administration to set in motion a number of immigration-related
actions. Some of his proposals could be launched immediately, while
others may require new regulations or Congressional action. Trump
administration rules finalized before President Trump leaves office
are likely to require a lengthy regulatory process to change,
unless the Congressional Review Act is invoked, which would allow
Congress to override any new regulations if Congress acts within 60
A non-exhaustive list of employment, labor, and student-related
highlights of President-elect Biden's immigration plans
- Reforming the visa program for
temporary workers in select industries that depend on seasonal and
short-term workers. President-elect Biden pledges to work with
Congress to allow workers in certain industries to switch jobs and
to allow employers to certify the labor market's need for
foreign workers. “Employers should be able to supply data
showing a lack of labor availability and the harm that would result
if temporary workers were unavailable,” the plan states. He
also pledges “strong safeguards that require employers to pay
a fair calculation of the prevailing wage and ensure the right of
all workers to join a union and exercise their labor
- Ensuring that high-skilled temporary
visas “not be used to dis-incentivize recruiting workers
already in the U.S. for in-demand occupations.” The plan
states that President-elect Biden will work with Congress to
establish a “wage-based allocation process” and
enforcement mechanisms to ensure that temporary visas are aligned
with the labor market “and not used to undermine
- Eliminating the limits on
employment-based visas by country.
- Providing “a path to
legalization for agricultural workers who have worked for years on
U.S. farms and continue to work in agriculture.”
- Supporting family-based immigration.
Under the plan, “any approved applicant” could receive a
temporary nonimmigrant visa until their permanent visa is
processed. Spouses and children of green card holders would be
treated as immediate relatives and would be exempted from caps.
Parents could bring their minor children with them when they
immigrate to the United States.
- Increasing the number of visas for
permanent, work-based immigration based on macroeconomic
conditions. President-elect Biden pledges to work with Congress
“to increase the number of visas awarded for permanent,
employment-based immigration—and promote mechanisms to
temporarily reduce the number of visas during times of high U.S.
unemployment.” He will also “exempt from any cap recent
graduates of PhD programs in STEM [science, technology,
engineering, and mathematics] fields” in the United States.
President-elect Biden “believes that foreign graduates of a
U.S. doctoral program should be given a green card with their
degree and that losing these highly trained workers to foreign
economies is a disservice to our own economic
- Creating a new visa category to allow
cities and counties to petition for higher levels of immigrants to
support their growth.
- Enforcing rules to protect both U.S.
and foreign workers and focusing on “abusive
- Expanding protections for
undocumented immigrants who report labor violations.
- Expanding labor rights and
protections for farmworkers and domestic workers.
- Reinstating the Deferred Action for
Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and ensuring that
“Dreamers” are eligible for federal student aid.
- Ordering an immediate review of
temporary protected status (TPS) and offering TPS holders who have
been in the United States for an “extended period of
time” and who have “built lives in the U.S.” a
“path to citizenship through legislative immigration
- Rescinding “Muslim
President-elect Biden also plans to develop and implement a
comprehensive, multinational, four-year regional strategy to
address factors driving migration from Central America, including
convening a regional meeting of leaders to propose solutions.
Details: “The Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a
Nation of Immigrants,” https://joebiden.com/immigration/https://joebiden.com/centralamerica/https://www.studyinternational.com/news/biden-international-students-in-the-us/
EOIR Finalizes Reorganization With
The Department of Justice's Executive Office for Immigration
Review (EOIR) adopted as final the provisions of an interim rule
published in August 2019, with additional amendments. The
reorganization includes the establishment of EOIR's Office of
Policy in 2017 and clarification of the EOIR Director's
authority to adjudicate cases. The final rule took effect November
The new amendments include:
- Restricting the authority of the EOIR
Director regarding the further delegation of certain regulatory
- Clarifying that the Director
interprets relevant regulatory provisions when adjudicating
“recognition and accreditation” cases;
- Reiterating the independent judgment
and discretion by which the EOIR Director will consider cases
subject to the Director's adjudication
Details: EOIR final rule, https://bit.ly/3eFKV2p
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