A number of large employers including Door Dash, Uber, Airbnb, The U.S Chamber of Commerce and several other organizations called on the Congress to pass Afghan Adjustment Act before December this year.
According to an International Rescue Committee (IRC) press release, in a letter sent to Congress, employers and business associations across the U.S. emphasized the contributions that Afghans are already making to the social and economic fabric of the country after being in the U.S. for little over a year, and that supporting the Afghan Adjustment Act is not only morally right but also makes economic sense. New IRC data has revealed that Afghans are projected to contribute $1.4 billion in earnings and nearly $200 million in taxes in their first year of employment alone.
The signers of the letter range from large national corporations to small businesses and chambers of commerce urging the passage of the Afghan Adjustment Act, which would create a pathway to permanent status for more than 78,000 Afghans evacuated to the U.S. in late 2021 and 2022. Currently, Afghans who arrived as part of this effort are only allowed to stay in the U.S. for a period of up to two years.
“The Chamber enthusiastically supports the Afghan Adjustment Act. The bill will provide much needed stability and certainty for our Afghan allies that are building their lives here in the U.S. We urge Members of the House and the Senate to swiftly enact this legislation before the end of this Congress”, Jonathan Baselice, Vice President of Immigration Policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said.
“America has a long tradition of bipartisan support for refugees since they have made the U.S. stronger and better for generations. Now, leading employers and associations join the widespread support for the Afghan Adjustment Act that we have seen over the last several months. From businesses to elected leaders, to veterans and everyday Americans, there is broad agreement that this bill is not just necessary, but essential for our new Afghan neighbors. It’s time for Congress to get this done”, said JC Hendrickson, Senior Director of Policy and Advocacy at the International Rescue Committee.
This comes as that the processing time for the regular asylum applications is much longer that these large group of refugees who are into the U.S job market can lose their work authorization document and Social Security Numbers in next 8 months as their Visas expire in August 2023.
Hundreds of thousands of Afghans had to flee the country after regain of the power by Taliban in August 2021. Many western countries including US, Canada, UK, Australia and European states announced humanitarian visa facilities for those Afghans who had worked for their projects in Afghanistan in addition to army, police, politicians, musicians, civil society members, journalists and women.
Below you may access the full text of the letter sent to the U.S Congress:
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Source: The Khaama Press News Agency