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Group calls for U.S. to change immigration policy

The Partnership for a New American Economy, which held a forum on immigration in Des Moines in October, released a report today comparing how other countries’ immigration policies are based more on economic impacts than is U.S. policy. 

The Partnership argues in its report “Not Coming to America: Why the U.S. is Falling Behind in the Global Race for Talent,” that the U.S. immigration laws are hindering American companies from hiring the workers they need in both high-skill and low-skill fields. 

“Today, too often, our immigration policy is simply self-defeating,” the report said. “After being trained at American universities, top foreign-born graduates are told to go home and compete against the U.S.”

The report said U.S. leaders need to prioritize economics over politics because the country faces losing young immigrants who could provide innovative ideas and technology start-up businesses, as well as missing out on a young labor force that the country will need when the Baby Boomer generation retires.

The Partnership made six suggestions for how the U.S. could change its policy:

– Provide visas to science, technology, engineering and math graduates who studied in the U.S.
– Provide more green cards based on economic need
– Create a visa program to allow foreign entrepreneurs to build their firms in the U.S.
– Let American companies hire the highly educated workers they need
– When American employers cannot find workers for seasonal and labor-intensive jobs, let them hire foreign workers
– Allow local governments to recruit more immigrants to meet regional needs

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