Chief HR officers urge rethinking on immigration policy and DACAAround the Nation, Breaking News, Top Highlights Thursday, October 26th, 2017
WASHINGTON, D.C. – More than 100 chief human resource officers today urged members of Congress and the Trump administration to consider in future policymaking the vital role foreign-born workers play in the U.S. economy. The letter from HR Policy Association noted the enactment of a statutory authorization of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program would be a step in the right direction. The Association is committed to working with policymakers to ensure that future immigration policy benefits American companies, workers, communities, and the American economy.
HR Policy Association represents the most senior human resource executives of the largest companies doing business in the United States. Collectively, these companies employ more than 10 million Americans, or nearly nine percent of the U.S. workforce. Their chief human resource officer is responsible for finding, hiring, and developing the talent needed for their organizations to thrive in the global marketplace.
The letter, signed by the chief human resource officers of 110 major companies, notes the importance of foreign-born workers amidst a workforce crisis characterized by six million unfilled job openings, a number related by Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta in a press conference earlier this year. As employers invest a cumulative $637 billion toward training and equipping the American workforce, foreign-born workers in the meantime help fill workforce gaps.
Mara Swan, Executive Vice President, Global Strategy and Talent at ManpowerGroup, and Chair of the HR Policy Association’s Emerging Workplace Committee, said, “Our companies believe that America deserves the benefits foreign-born workers—including Dreamers—bring to its workers, companies, communities, and economy. At the same time, we remain strongly committed to training and equipping the U.S. workforce to build a strong economy. As America’s top hiring officials, we are aware that to ensure U.S. global competitiveness both a strong domestic workforce and an immigration policy that responds to the needs of employers are needed.”
HR Policy Chair Mirian Graddick-Weir, Executive Vice President, Human Resources, Merck & Co., Inc., said, “We are proud to note the important role workers who were born outside the U.S. play in the American success story. Our hope with this letter is that the Administration and Congress likewise recognize that role in future policymaking.”
The letter notes: “America’s international competitors understand that attracting workforce talent from around the world is vital to economic success, and many are rewriting their immigration policies accordingly. Some have gone so far as to say that the United States’ reticent attitude toward foreign workers has created an opportunity for other countries to secure the economic benefits derived from those workers. As Congress and the administration considerproposals for changes in the immigration laws and/or enforcement strategies regarding existing laws, we urge you to consider these benefits to American workers, companies, communities, and the American economy.”
The Association is also releasing its recent Emerging Workplace report on immigration, “How Foreign-Born Workers Make America More Competitive and Benefit American Workers,” detailing the importance of foreign-born workers to the prosperity of the United States. “Foreign-born workers of all skill levels benefit their companies, American workers, American communities, and the American economy,” it says. “These benefits are shared widely.
In areas where foreign-born workers meet a workforce need, wages increase and new jobs are created.” The report contains a number of recommendations aimed at allowing employers the flexibility to bring on the optimal number of foreign-born skilled and unskilled workers while also maintaining the important worker protections and policies that genuinely protect or help maintain the conditions to create American jobs. Among other recommendations, the report advocates for the enactment of a statutory authorization of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Read the Association’s letter to Washington policymakers here.
Read the Association’s report on Immigration here.
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