OSHA's Worker Rights and Protections

Work with DoS to Protect J-1 Visa Holders

Description of Idea :

In our experience, DOL should work to protect J-1 visa holders from trafficking and exploitation. This should be done through cooperation with DOS on pre-departure training, consistent and timely investigations and screening of all host programs, reliable reporting resources for complaints, and more. In our experience, the J-1 program can be valuable; however, it involves significant opportunity for exploitation where participants—who have paid for the program and their own insurance, travel and more—are forced to work in difficult conditions in remote areas without adequate support or protections. They fear loss of status and retaliation, and many are reliant on the program for housing. Yet, few in our experience have been aware of any resources for reporting complaints and guaranteeing their rights. Again, DOL must also ensure that ICE decline to take deportation action against J-1s who have violated their status or overstayed as a result of such trafficking or abuse.

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Idea No. 80