Senators introduce bill to broaden green card pathway

The legislation if approved would provide a much needed pathway to permanent residency to at least 8 million people.

Yasmin Tinwala

U.S. Senator Alex Padilla, D-Ca., alongwith Senator Bernie Sanders and other co-sponsors introduced a legislation to expand a pathway to permanent residency for millions of long-term U.S. non-citizens.

According to a release, the Renewing Immigration Provisions of the Immigration Act of 1929 seeks to update the existing Registry statute so that an immigrant may qualify to submit an application for a green card if they have stayed in the US continuously for at least seven years and are of good moral character.

The U.S. has a per-country cap of 7 percent for green cards. As per a 2020 study by David J. Bier for Cato Institute, skilled Indian workers make up 75 per cent of the employment-based backlog which will exceed 2.4 million by 2030. It said, over 200,000 Indians could die of old age while awaiting their green cards.

The legislation introduced by the senators would provide the much-needed pathway to a green card for more than 8 million people, including highly skilled workforce members living in the States on an H-1B visa, waiting for years for a green card, the release by Padilla’s office stated.

As per estimates, if the undocumented individuals covered in the bill became citizens, they would contribute approximately $121 billion to the U.S. economy annually and about $35 billion in taxes. ​

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