The US House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the Equal Access to Green Cards for Legal Employment (EAGLE) Act of 2022. EAGLE Act would eliminate a per-country cap on employment-based green cards, a policy that disproportionately affects Indian immigrants. If passed, the new legislation could be beneficial to several hundreds of thousands of immigrants especially Indian-Americans.
The EAGLE Act would phase out the per-country caps over the course of nine years. It would ensure that eligible immigrants from less populated countries are not excluded. ‘The administration supports efforts to improve our immigrant visa system,’ the White House says. The bill would also ease the harsh effects of the immigrant visa backlog.
Changes would take effect over a nine-year transition period to ensure that no countries are excluded from receiving visas while the per-country caps are phased out. During the transition period, visas would also be set aside for nurses and physical therapists to address urgent needs in the healthcare industry. The White House supports the House passage of HR 3648, the Equal Access to Green Cards for Legal Employment Act.
The bill would allow employment-based immigrants to transition off of their temporary visas and provide them with additional flexibility in changing employers or starting a business. It also includes important provisions to allow individuals who have been waiting in the immigrant visa backlog for two years to file their green card applications. ‘This legislation would be life-changing for hundreds of thousands of immigrants,’ an Indian American activist says.
The bill would also keep families together by ensuring that children of employment-based immigrants do not age out of dependent status or lose their eligibility for a green card, the White House said. ‘Immigrants keep our economy growing, our communities thriving, and our country moving forward,’ it said. The administration urges Congress to pass the US Citizenship Act, which would further reform and improve the immigrant visa system.