Murkowski Statement on Order Affecting H-2B Workers, J-1 Visas

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) made the following statement after President Trump issued a “Proclamation Suspending Entry of Aliens Who Present a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market Following the Coronavirus Outbreak,” which includes an exemption for workers seeking to enter the U.S. to provide temporary labor or services essential to the nation’s food supply chain, such as the seafood industry:

“The COVID pandemic has strained workers and businesses all across the nation. I appreciate the administration’s effort to account for Alaska’s critical summer seafood season by exempting food supply chain workers from the suspension of non-immigrant visas. This will not only help keep our world-class seafood industry running, but help safeguard the U.S. food supply, both in Alaska and across the nation. I look forward to working with the administration to restart the J-1 program—which is incredibly valuable to Alaska’s visitor industry—once our economy is on stable footing. These types of cultural exchange programs not only fill vacant jobs but create opportunities for relationship-building between countries.”

Related Issues: COVID-19 Resource Page, Alaska's Fisheries