Indian American families disproportionately affected
The Trump administration`s proposal to end work authorization for H-4 visa holders will disproportionately affect Indian American families, among other South Asian Americans, noted a report released July 16 by the South Asian American Policy and Research Institute.The continuation of the H-4 work authorization program — put into place in 2015 by the Obama administration — has been in jeopardy since the advent of the Trump administration, which has prioritized “Buy American and Hire Americans.” H-4 visas are given to the dependents of H-1B visa holders. Work authorization is allowed for H-4 dependents whose spouses are on track to get a green card.The program currently allows about 90,000 people, primarily women from India, to legally work in the U.S. Ninety-three percent of all H-4 EADs were granted to South Asians and 93 percent were granted to women, according to the SAAPRI report, titled “Defying Dependence.”Losing work authorization would jeopardize financial stability for 23 percent of the women surveyed. Forty-eight percent said they were concerned about their overall future, according to the findings. SAAPRI noted that 7 percent of workers holding H-4 EAD status have started businesses of their own, which employ other immigrants and U.S. citizens, challenging the narrative that H-4 EAD workers are stealing American jobs.