BOSTON (SHNS) – Business organizations that collectively represent more than 10,000 employers in Massachusetts and one million employees are echoing calls from top state officials for the federal government to take action and make more migrants eligible to work.
In a letter sent Monday night to U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, officials from 21 business groups added their voices to the call for the feds to process work authorizations for migrants and allow for provisional work authorizations while administrative processes unfold. Describing a crisis here that “is both economic and humanitarian,” the business groups also asked for monetary aid and policy changes to aid the state as it cares for the influx of migrants.
They said that employers continue to look for workers and remain unable to fill open jobs while at the same time the state’s shelter system, which has expanded into hotels, is filling up with people who have fled their home countries and made the journey to Massachusetts.
The groups noted in their letter that there are nearly 6,500 families in the state’s shelter system, “and these numbers will continue to grow as it is estimated that more than 1,000 families could seek shelter per month.”
“It is critical to these families, our communities, and our economy that these migrants are allowed to work as quickly as possible,” the officials said. The signatories include top executives from the Massachusetts Business Roundtable, MassEcon, 1Berkshire, the Mass. Technology Leadership Council, One SouthCoast Chamber, the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce, the Charles River Regional Chamber, Amplify Latinx, and the Asian Business Empowerment Council.