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AHCA Applauds Senator Jeff Flake for Introducing the Willing Workers and Willing Employers Act  
AHCA Applauds Senator Jeff Flake for Introducing the Willing Workers and Willing Employers Act
S. 2827 would help relieve nurse shortages by creating a less-skilled worker visa pilot program
AHCAPressOffice@ahca.org
(202) 898-3165
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

4/22/2016
Washington, D.C. – The American Health Care Association (AHCA) today applauded Senator Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) for his introduction of the Willing Workers and Willing Employers Act which helps ease nursing workforce shortages. The bill makes it easier for foreign nurses and other health care workers to get jobs at skilled nursing centers via the creation of a 10-year pilot guest worker program.
“Recruiting, training, and retaining caregiving staff are the biggest challenges facing skilled nursing care centers today,” said Clifton J. Porter II, senior vice president of government relations for the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living. “This bill creates a guest worker program with a smart, market-based approach that will meet the care needs of our residents and patients.”
Different from other guest worker program legislation introduced in recent years, this program will apply only in counties and metro areas where the unemployment rate is less than 5 percent. Other characteristics of the bill include:
·       Creation of a pilot guest worker program designed to address the gap that currently exists between temporary visa programs for seasonal workers and the H-1B visa program for highly skilled immigrants.
·       Creation of a flexible cap ranging from 65,000 to 85,000 registered positions a year to match economic demand.
·       Strict requirements that employers must seek an available U.S. worker before hiring a guest worker under this program.
A long-standing member of the Essential Worker Immigration Coalition (EWIC), AHCA is one of 37 organizations that has worked closely with key Congressional members to shape and draft practical immigration reform legislation. To learn more, visit the EWIC website.
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