Currently, the wait time for an EB-4 visa exceeds five years for all applicants.
Implementation of this minor legislative fix would:
- Ensure eligible youth have more timely access to lawful permanent resident status (i.e., a green card), in accordance with their humanitarian needs.
- Reduce the risks of homelessness and exploitation that SIJ-eligible minors face as they wait in a years-long backlog for EB-4 visas.
- Increase the availability of EB-4 visas for religious workers who serve communities across the nation.
- Increase the availability of EB-4 visas for others within the category, such as members of the U.S. armed forces, noncitizens who have supplied information concerning a criminal organization or enterprise or a terrorist organization, enterprise, or operation, and others.
As Bishop Mark Seitz, chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on Migration, said in a recent letter: “With this small change, [Congress] could uphold the right to religious exercise, a foundational American principle, and empower vulnerable young people to flourish in their new country, contribute to our nation, and reach their full God-given potential.”
Help ensure vulnerable youth receive the protections they deserve and American communities can benefit from the contributions of religious workers by completing this action alert in support of the Protect Vulnerable Immigrant Youth Act.