New Report: U.S.’ Outdated High-skilled Immigration System Needs Overhaul & Hatch Foundation Release Comes On ‘H-1B’ Day

WASHINGTON, DC – and the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation today released a new report on the need for reforms to the U.S.’ legal immigration system, in order to grow the economy, foster innovation and global competitiveness, and create new American jobs. The report is a collaboration between and the Hatch Foundation focused on advocating for commonsense, bipartisan immigration policy reforms around legal immigration channels.

The report’s release on April 1 is significant, as it marks the day that USCIS begins accepting H-1B visa petitions for Fiscal Year 2020. There are 65,000 visas available, and another 20,000 available for individuals who hold advanced degrees from U.S. colleges and universities. The 85,000 annual cap has been exhausted within one week for the previous six years.

“We haven’t updated our high-skilled immigration system in over 25 years, and we’re clearly seeing and feeling the consequences. Every year, the huge demand for H-1B visas – which allow highly-skilled individuals to contribute their talents to the U.S. economy – far outpaces what is available, forcing the U.S. to miss out on the creation of American jobs. Immigrants are good for Americans; they contribute to our economy, and grow the middle class,” said President Todd Schulte. “We are proud to partner with the Hatch Foundation to release this new report, which underscores the urgent need for commonsense policies that would modernize our badly outdated legal immigration system, so that the best and the brightest from around the world can continue to bring their skills here to create new jobs and keep the U.S. competitive in the global economy.”

“The United States is the innovation capital of the world, with a talented workforce that is second to none,” said former Senator Orrin G. Hatch. “But unless we fix our broken immigration system, our workforce—and our economy—will fall behind. That’s why I have long been a champion of bipartisan immigration reform, including efforts to maximize the contributions of high-skilled workers. To maintain our global economic competitiveness, we must continue to attract the best and brightest in the world. This report is a blueprint for achieving that goal.”

In the report, and the Hatch Foundation find that “America’s ability to attract, educate, and employ the world’s greatest talent has created a workforce pipeline that has fueled our economy, and we must continue to replenish that pipeline with fresh ideas and skill-sets from around the globe… Economists have understood for decades that high-skilled professionals working in the sciences and engineering are fundamental to driving innovation, technological adoption, and productivity.”

The full report is available here.

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