Tech giant Amazon has urged the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to issue all employment-based green cards by the September 30th deadline for processing green card applications this year.
Amazon made the request after it emerged that approximately 100,000 green cards had not yet been decided as of June end.
Senior Vice President of Human Resources at Amazon Beth Galetti said that immigrants had to wait a long time for green cards before 2020, and the Covid-19 pandemic led to more delays. As a result, more than 65,000 employment-based green cards were not used in 2021.
"Congress allocated 281,000 employment-based green cards for 2022, but as of June 30th, more than 100,000 remained to be decided. Amazon praises the USCIS's efforts, which have resulted in the agency issuing over 176,000 employment-based green cards as of June 30 but there is still a sizable backlog until the September deadline," Galetti said in an official post.
The green cards cannot be transferred or added to the count for the next year if they are not utilized.
"Employees of Amazon who are impacted by the backlog already reside in the US and support regional economies. In addition to helping these immigrant employees and their families, granting green cards also benefits US firms, neighborhoods, and regions economically and culturally," Galetti added.
Amazon and many other employers in the US are calling on the USCIS to administer all employment-based green cards to immigrant workers before the deadline.
Galetti said the company has offered to help USCIS resolve these cases and efficiently eliminate the backlog, citing the impact of such delays on the lives and families of foreign workers in the US who have been working there for quite a long time.
“We hope USCIS will take the important and urgent step of allocating all green cards for this year,” Galetti added.