USCIS was left without money: more than half of employees will lose their jobs
The US Citizenship and Immigration Service is preparing to send on vacation without the maintenance of more than half of its workforce. CNN.
A federal agency authorized to provide immigration benefits, process visa applications and apply for citizenship is preparing to leave more than half its employees unemployed if Congress does not provide additional funding, according to a USCIS spokeswoman.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services notified Congress of an alleged budget deficit in May. While negotiations continue, according to the agency, preparations are underway for leave without content.
According to a USCIS spokesperson, approximately 13 employees will receive a notification of whether they will be sent on vacation without maintenance from August 400. The agency employs about 3 people.
USCIS is mainly funded by fees and typically continues most operations even when funding problems arise, as was the case during last year’s government closure. But during the pandemic, the agency suspended the provision of personal services, including all interviews and naturalization ceremonies.
“The sharp drop in revenues made it impossible for our agency to operate at full capacity,” a USCIS spokesman said in a statement. "Without additional funding from Congress until August 3, USCIS has no choice but to administratively send a significant portion of our workforce on unpaid leave."
The immigration agency is at the center of a series of administrative measures aimed at reducing legal immigration to the United States. Recently, the White House issued a decree imposing new restrictions on work visas and banning the entry of thousands of immigrants into the United States. The administration also seeks to prohibit asylum seekers illegally crossing the border from receiving work permit (with some exceptions) and delay the issuance of permits.
The depletion of the agency’s funds appears to be the result of an administration policy that reduced the number of petitions and, consequently, fees received by the USCIS, said Sarah Pearce, an analyst with the US Institute for Migration Policy. According to Pierce, fees have fallen, while the costs of checking for trustworthiness and identifying fraud have increased.
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