Group urges State Department to recognize all H-2A visas as essential
As a member of the Agriculture Workforce Coalition’s (AWC) steering committee, NPC signed on to a letter sent on March 18 to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urging the department to recognize all H-2A visas as essential. The letter came in response to a March 16 State Department decision to suspend regular visa processing at the U.S. embassy in Mexico City and all U.S. consulates in Mexico in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We agree that governments and the private sector must take all necessary precautions to reduce further transmission of the virus in our communities, however those steps must be proportional and reasonable. The Food and Agriculture Sector remains critical at this trying time and must be able to continue to provide sustenance,” the group says in the letter.
The group specifically called for H-2A and any other non-immigrant visa petitions involving an agricultural worker visa to be deemed essential, and urged U.S. consulates to treat all agricultural worker appointments as requiring emergency visa services. The full letter can be found here.