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COVID-19: President Trump Suspends the Issuing of Green Cards

The suspension, a bid to protect American workers in the country, has been set for 60 days amid the pandemic

US President Trump announced on April 22, a 60-day pause on the issuing of Green Cards, therefore, delaying the process for people seeking permanent residence in the United States. The suspension is a part of the Executive Order on the temporary suspension of US immigration due to the coronavirus outbreak in the world. Mr Trump announced that he is most likely to sign the Order on April 22. The document will, however, have exemptions as Mr Trump said that non-immigrant work visas including the H1B and L1 would not be affected. Other temporary travel visas would remain unaffected as well. The President justified his decision as a mean to protect American workers in the country and secure employment opportunities amid the outbreak.

President Trump further added that this Order will be reviewed at the end of the 60-day period. At a daily White House news conference on COVID-19, he said, “We must first take care of the American worker. This pause will be in effect for 60 days, after which need for any extension or modification will be evaluated by myself and a group of people based on economic conditions at the time.” He also assured that this order will only apply to those seeking permanent residency and not for those who’re travelling on a temporary basis. Though further details have not been released yet, policy experts have predicted that the restrictions may be extended to other types of visas over a period of time. This decision will most likely affect tens of thousands of Indians who are waiting for their green cards as the application process would get delayed. 

According to the records, more than 22 million American workers have signed up for unemployment benefits as a result of the global health crisis. Mr Trump, in the conference at the White House, said that he believes by temporarily suspending new immigrations will help in conserving vital medical resources for American citizens. According to Johns Hopkins University, as on April 22, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the US stands at 8,25,306 with 45,075 deaths, highest in the world.