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Kaine Statement on Release of Additional H-2B Visas

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement regarding the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Labor’s (DOL) announcement that an additional 64,716 H-2B temporary nonagricultural worker visas will be made available for U.S. employers for Fiscal Year (FY) 2023:

“I welcome today’s announcement from the Biden Administration. Seafood processors are an integral part of economies up and down our coast. We must ensure that these businesses—as well as Virginia’s other seasonal industries—can hire the staff they need to thrive. We need to modernize the H-2B visa program to help those businesses, protect U.S. and immigrant workers, and safeguard our food supply chain from disruptions.”

Even during times of high unemployment, seafood processors in rural and remote coastal regions in Virginia have struggled to find domestic workers. Today’s announcement follows a March 2022 push by Kaine, alongside Senator Mark R. Warner and Maryland Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, urging the Biden administration to make available the maximum number of congressionally-authorized H-2B visas to ensure that seafood processors have the workforce they need.