Congressman Says Visa Approval Amid Crab Crisis 'Imminent'

Congressman Says Visa Approval Amid Crab Crisis ‘Imminent’

Originally published by The New York Times

A Maryland congressman says federal immigrant officials have agreed to approve 15,000 more seasonal guest worker visas.

The Baltimore Sun reports the announcement Thursday from U.S. Rep. Andy Harris came amid reports that Maryland's crab industry is suffering a labor shortage. Nearly half of Maryland crab workers were left without laborers to pick crab meat after their mostly Mexican workforce failed to get H-2B visas. The H-2B visa program is for seasonal workers in non-agricultural jobs.

Crab processors say what share they get of the additional visas still won't be enough. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services wouldn't confirm the approval to the Sun Thursday. But Harris says he's working with the Trump administration to either raise the cap or allow Maryland's seafood business workers to get visas through another program.

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