The Donald Trump administration in the United States has listed five Caribbean countries among 84 countries worldwide that are eligible for H-2A and H-2B visa programmes that allow US employers to bring foreign nationals to the US to fill temporary agricultural and nonagricultural jobs, respectively.
US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in consultation with the Department of State (DOS), said the five Caribbean countries are eligible to participate in the programmes in 2020.
They are: Barbados, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Jamaica, and St Vincent and the Grenadines.
But USCIS said while the Dominican Republic is eligible to participate in the H-2A programme, it is not eligible to participate in the H-2B programme.
For 2020, USCIS said the acting DHS has determined, with the concurrence of the Office of the Secretary of State, that the countries designated as eligible in 2019 would remain unchanged.
“DHS maintains its authority to add countries to the eligible countries list at any time, and to remove any country whenever DHS and DOS determine that a country fails to meet the requirements for continued designation,” said USCIS in a statement.
It said examples of factors that could result in the exclusion or removal of a country from the list include fraud, abuse, denial rates, overstay rates, human trafficking concerns, and other forms of noncompliance with the terms and conditions of the H-2 visa programmes by nationals of that country.
“Each country’s designation is valid, subject to removal for failure to meet the requirements for continued designation, from January 19, 2020, until January 18, 2021,” USCIS said.