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US one year ban on work visas for Filipinos

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http://cnnphilippines.com/news/2019/01/22/U.S.-ban-working-visas-Filipinos.html

The U.S. government has imposed a one-year ban on issuing some temporary work visas to Filipinos over concerns of "severe" overstaying and human trafficking.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of State (DOS) delisted the Philippines from countries eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B programs, according to a document published on the Federal Register, effective January 18 this year to January 19, 2020.


This means Filipinos will not be issued visas for temporary or seasonal work in the agricultural (H-2A) and non-agricultural (H-2B) sectors. Other types of visas remain available to Filipinos, including H-1B for those engaged in specialty occupation, which includes "fashion models of distinguished merit and ability and government-to-government research and development, or co-production projects administered by the Department of Defense."

"The Philippines has a high H-2B overstay rate. In FY 2017, DHS estimated that nearly 40 percent of H-2B visa holders from the Philippines overstayed their period of authorized stay," the DHS said.

It also expressed concern over the high volume of trafficking victims from the Philippines who were originally issued H-2B visas. "Continued H-2B visa issuance may encourage or serve as an avenue for future human trafficking from the Philippines," it added.

The DHS said these overstay and human trafficking concerns "are severe enough to warrant removal from the H-2A visa program as well."

"This concern is informed by a four-fold increase in H-2A visa applications from nationals of the Philippines between FY 2015-2018. The Philippines' continued inclusion creates the potential for abuse, fraud, and other harm to the integrity of the H-2A or H-2B visa programs," it added.

In response to the U.S. decision, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) reminded Filipinos to follow immigration and visa rules.

"As visa issuances are a country's prerogative, the DFA notes the concerns that led the DHS to arrive at its decision. Nonetheless, the Philippines is open to the possibility of working with the United States in addressing these issues, as it has previously done so with similar concerns involving the Filipino Community there," the agency said in a statement.

Malacañang said the DFA and the Philippine ambassador to the U.S. should attend to the situation as it has yet to receive an official report.

"First we need to know of there is basis for the decision. If we see na wala naman then we will ask for a reconsideration," Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a media briefing Tuesday.

"We will respect if they have basis for that. We will only react if our workers are being mistreated, maltreated, or being discriminated against but if they violated the laws of the U.S., then they have to face the music," Panelo added.

For now, Panelo said Filipinos seeking to work abroad can do so in countries other than the U.S.

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5 hours ago, Mike J said:

For now, Panelo said Filipinos seeking to work abroad can do so in countries other than the U.S.

Great piece of advice to finish with - NOT! 

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They all do it on tourist visas anyway lol, 3 of my wifes family are there. Mechanic, Carer and waiter. Can't believe how easy it seems to be to get the 6 month tourist visa if you've got some family over there.

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There are US tourists who come to the Philippines and overstay.  The legal tourists from the USA would not like it if the Philippines responded with a total ban on US tourist visa because there are some who overstay.   Seems to be racial profiling and I would not be surprised if Duterte decided to play tit for tat.

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8 minutes ago, Dave Hounddriver said:

There are US tourists who come to the Philippines and overstay.  The legal tourists from the USA would not like it if the Philippines responded with a total ban on US tourist visa because there are some who overstay.   Seems to be racial profiling and I would not be surprised if Duterte decided to play tit for tat.

Well he was turned down for a tourist visa to the US years ago, it seems to be a big reason he is anti-American.

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22 minutes ago, fillipino_wannabe said:

Can't believe how easy it seems to be to get the 6 month tourist visa if you've got some family over there.

Seems they may know that and hence the ban

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43 minutes ago, Dave Hounddriver said:

There are US tourists who come to the Philippines and overstay.  The legal tourists from the USA would not like it if the Philippines responded with a total ban on US tourist visa because there are some who overstay.   Seems to be racial profiling and I would not be surprised if Duterte decided to play tit for tat.

Percentages.

It is typically a result of compliance percentages. When a country  hits “X” percent of non-compliance the people are bucketed into a less favorable risk profile. Generally applicants from poorer countries are more incentivized to overstay as a result of opportunities they would otherwise not have back home. For whatever reason they typically have higher rate of non-compliance. Citizens from a developed country generally violate in low percentages hence they tend to have more freedom of movement. Anything else forming the motivation behind the action I have no idea.

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On 1/22/2019 at 11:03 PM, Dave Hounddriver said:

There are US tourists who come to the Philippines and overstay.  The legal tourists from the USA would not like it if the Philippines responded with a total ban on US tourist visa because there are some who overstay.   Seems to be racial profiling and I would not be surprised if Duterte decided to play tit for tat.

On 1/22/2019 at 11:03 PM, Dave Hounddriver said:

There are US tourists who come to the Philippines and overstay.  The legal tourists from the USA would not like it if the Philippines responded with a total ban on US tourist visa because there are some who overstay.   Seems to be racial profiling and I would not be surprised if Duterte decided to play tit for tat.

Dave, I don’t think we’re talking a few who overstay. It’s almost half. However, I would not be at all surprised if the PI. responded in kind.

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DU30 has already made it clear that those who do not follow US Immigration law will have to accept the punishment they receive. I read some where that there are between 200,000 and 300,000 illegal Filipinos in the US. The majority of those are overstays. Do that here and find out what happens to you.

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3 hours ago, Ram1957 said:

DU30 has already made it clear that those who do not follow US Immigration law will have to accept the punishment they receive. I read some where that there are between 200,000 and 300,000 illegal Filipinos in the US. The majority of those are overstays. Do that here and find out what happens to you.

Illegal Filipino citizens living (overstaying) in USA, 2015 = 370,000*

*see table 2

https://www.dhs.gov/immigration-statistics/population-estimates/unauthorized-resident

There are published estaminets the number may actually be over 800,000. It's widely thought the US Government is understating the true numbers.

Edited by Old55
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