March 18, 2020

WG, Industry Outlines Need for H-2A Flexibility

As reported earlier this week, the U.S. Department of State suspended regular visa processing at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City and all U.S. consulates in Mexico in response to COVID-19. While the Administration did announce they will be prioritizing interview waiver cases for returning H-2A workers, the number of eligible workers under this protocol will still be vastly insufficient to meet the pending demand.

In response, WG joined the Agriculture Workforce Coalition in issuing a letter calling on Secretary Pompeo to prioritize H-2A visa applications.

In part, the letter states that the food and agriculture sector has been designated a “Critical Infrastructure Sector” by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and that, “An interruption to the processing of agricultural worker visas will undoubtedly cause a significant disruption to the U.S. food supply.”

The letter then urges Secretary Pompeo to “recognize all H-2A, as well as any other non-immigrant visa petition involving an agricultural worker, visa consular processing functions as essential and direct the U.S. Consulates to treat all agricultural worker appointments as emergency visa services.”

Click here to read the full letter. WG will continue to keep you apprised of the latest H-2A visa processing developments.