Foreign nationals who want to start a life in the United States face a variety of challenges when certain visas suddenly became available. They suddenly face obstacles, if not outright barriers, in an immigration process that is complex and hard to navigate and understand.
Business organizations were quick to express their opposition to last year’s ban on H-1B visas for skilled professionals in the technology industry, the initial focus of the ban.
A controversial, pandemic-driven decision
Good news finally came recently, thanks to President Biden’s decision to not renew the ban. A prior ban on foreign work visas ordered by the previous presidential administration will be allowed to expire ten months after its implementation. Ordered in the early part of the pandemic, it was put in place to protect the public and help the suddenly struggling U.S. job market.
Although expected, after President Joe Biden expressed his opposition to the ban, the announcement appeared without much fanfare on the U.S. Department of State’s website.
This ban has been deemed not important or helpful to the U.S. economy by the current administration. Foreign family members of U.S. citizens are no longer blocked from entering the country. Also, those who won the diversity program lottery will be allowed in the country; foreign nationals with green cards will continue to be allowed into the U.S., like they always have been allowed to do.
A change in presidents and a significant shift in immigration policies (and philosophy) can make a difference to those who have waited long enough to start new chapters in their lives in the U.S.