Gov. Kathy Hochul wants migrants to fill NYS jobs

Gov. Kathy Hochul tweeted, “Businesses need workers and migrants want to work. More than 110 business leaders agree: We need the federal government to speed up the work authorization process. Let them work.”

Governor Kathy Hochul is urging the federal government to expedite the authorization process for migrants to fill vacant positions in New York State (NYS). The labor force in New York City and its surrounding areas has seen a significant decline since the pandemic, particularly affecting the manufacturing, leisure, and hospitality sectors.

To support migrant case management programs in upstate New York, Gov. Kathy Hochul has allocated $36 million. She expressed gratitude to counties that have stepped up to welcome these individuals and emphasized the importance of their contributions to the community. The funding aims to speed up the process of obtaining legal work status for migrants and assist organizations in meeting their needs.

Gov. Hochul stated, “I am grateful to counties like Erie and Monroe and Albany County and many others that have stepped up to help welcome these individuals, let them be part of the community and the second they can work, they are now contributing.” She continued, “I understand the feelings of people living in our communities. There is a fear of the unknown. What does this mean? Are the numbers going to increase? Can we handle this. That is real for our residents and I want to assure them that we are working very hard so they can have the same right to work that immigrants who came before them had.”

Recognizing the need for a faster work authorization process, over 110 business leaders have joined forces to advocate streamlining the bureaucratic hurdles. By doing so, businesses can access a larger pool of workers, enhancing productivity and economic growth.

NY Post reported migrant workers are securing more job opportunities with better pay and conditions as US employers strive to maintain their businesses amidst labor shortages. Expediting the work authorization process allows migrants to find meaningful employment that aligns with their skills, improving their economic well-being and promoting social integration. This, in turn, fosters social cohesion and reduces the likelihood of social tensions.

However, language barriers may pose challenges in finding suitable candidates, especially in sectors with specific skill requirements. Despite this, hiring migrant workers can benefit businesses of all sizes and industries, as they bring valuable skills and contribute to technological advancements and innovation.

While a recent Siena College poll shows that a majority of New Yorkers view the influx of migrants as a serious problem, Governor Hochul understands the concerns and assures residents that efforts are being made to ensure equal work rights for all. Disapproval of the governor’s handling of crime and the migrant influx is reflected in her favorability and approval ratings, but she remains focused on the task at hand.

According to the Siena poll, Hochul’s favorability and approval ratings are at an all-time low.

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