The United States has long been a country of immigrants, and that is not likely to change anytime soon. According to the Pew Research Center, more than 40 million immigrants lived in the U.S. in 2020, making up 13.5% of the population. That number is only expected to grow in the coming years.
While some may see this as a negative, it is an opportunity for communities to come together and help these new Americans assimilate and find success. The ongoing labor shortage means the country needs more workers than ever, even hiring people from outside the country. However, getting immigrants to work in your community isn’t as easy as you think. But with the right know-how, you can make your community hire more immigrants than ever. Here are five ways you can help your community hire more immigrants:
Get Involved with Local Organizations
There are likely already organizations in your community that are doing good work to help immigrants find employment. Here is a list of the biggest immigrant-based organizations in the country and what they do:
- The Immigration Advocates Network is a coalition of over 100 organizations that provide free or low-cost legal services to immigrants.
- The National Immigration Forum is the largest pro-immigrant advocacy organization in the country. They lobby for responsible immigration policies at the federal, state, and local levels.
- The American Immigration Lawyers Association is a national nonprofit comprising over 15,000 immigration lawyers and law professors who educate and represent immigrants.
- The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES) is a Texas-based organization that provides free and low-cost legal services to immigrants.
Supporting these organizations financially or with your time can go a long way in helping them achieve their goals.
Advocate For the Right Policies
There are likely already laws and regulations that make it difficult for businesses to hire immigrants. Here are some of the biggest policies supporting immigrants in the country right now:
- The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) states that undocumented children who came into the country years ago can now find a way to stay and work legally.
- The Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program provides legal status and work authorization to immigrants from countries affected by natural disasters, armed conflict, or other extraordinary circumstances.
Voice your support for these and upcoming policies so businesses can hire the workers they need more easily.
Educate Yourself and Become a Mentor
There are many myths and misconceptions about immigrating to another country. Help dispel these myths by educating yourself and sharing what you learn with others. Here are some things you need to know about immigration to teach others.
Moving from one country to another takes time, and it takes more than just finishing a document and passing it. Sometimes immigrants can get into trouble, so immigrants also need to know about bonds and their processes. The immigration bonds hearing process and requirements are something most immigrants don’t know about, but the most essential is that the immigrant must show that they are not a flight risk and will appear for future court hearings.
The amount of the bond is set by the Department of Homeland Security based on several factors, including the immigrant’s criminal history and whether they have been ordered deported in the past.
If the immigrant is released on bond, they must comply with all conditions set by the court, including reporting to an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office and wearing an electronic monitoring device. Thankfully, the bonds are refundable, so long as the immigrant appears for all their court hearings.
Programs for Immigration
You should also teach interested immigrants how they can move to the United States. There are various options given to them. The Diversity Visa Program is one of the most common.
Diversity Visa Program
The United States has a program that makes a limited number of visas available each year to people from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. The program is known as the Diversity Visa Program, and it makes 55,000 visas available each year.
To be eligible for the program, applicants must have completed at least a high school education or equivalent or worked for two years in an occupation requiring at least two years of training or experience.
In addition, applicants must pass a civil and criminal background check and have no history of immigration violations.
If you want to help your community, hire more immigrants, and educate yourself about the process and requirements for immigrating to the United States. You can also become a mentor to someone interested in immigrating. Helping others navigate the process can make a big difference in their ability to find work and build a life in their new community.
As the country starts to experience the worst parts of the ongoing labor shortage, it’s important that community members do everything they can to help them assimilate and find success. There are various ways to do these, but the listed tips above are some of the best ways to help your community hire more immigrants. Do your part to make sure everyone in your community has the opportunity to thrive!