Coronavirus Government Response Update—Administration Puts Hold on Green Cards

June 15, 2020 Coronavirus Government Response Update—Administration Puts Hold on Green Cards

Welcome to the Coronavirus Government Response Update. This information is intended to keep ISSA members up to date on fast-moving government affairs related to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as other public policy issues important to the cleaning industry. Today’s update touches on the White House’s hold on green card requests from the U.S., a potential manufacturing stimulus, the pandemic’s toll on the number of small business owners, and more.

Administration Puts ‘Hold’ on Green Card Requests from U.S.
While green card requests by immigrants abroad seeking U.S. residency have already been put on hold, the Trump Administration will now also suspend processing green card requests from applicants already living in the country. Immigration officials stated the hold “stems from a pandemic-related shortage of manpower.”

The White House Wants US$2 Trillion Manufacturing Stimulus
White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said that the White House is planning a more than US$2 trillion phase four stimulus package targeting American manufacturing, which, if finalized, “must” be done by the August recess. “We need to create more manufacturing jobs,” Navarro said. “Manufacturing jobs not only provide good wages but also create more jobs both up- and downstream through multiplier effects.”

COVID-19 Causes Sharpest Drop in Small Business Owners on Record
A recent National Bureau of Economic Research paper provided the first analysis of early pandemic impacts on the number of active small businesses in the United States. According to the report, the number of active business owners in the United States plummeted by 3.3 million, or 22% from February to April, the largest fall on record. African American businesses were hit especially hard, experiencing a 41% decline. Latinx business owners fell by 32%, and Asian business owners dropped by 26%. Immigrant business owners experienced substantial losses of 26%, and female-owned businesses were also disproportionately hit by 25%.

CDC Releases New Safety Guidance as States Lift Limits

The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) released new safety guidelines reminding the public that the pandemic continues to loom. CDC Director Robert Redfield warned that large gatherings where it’s difficult to keep six feet apart still involve a high risk. In all types and sizes of gatherings, people should “continue social distancing and taking steps like hand-washing and wearing a cloth mask to protect themselves and others from the virus.”

China’s Economy Making Slow Comeback, but Still Fragile
China’s industrial production was up 4.4% in May—the biggest gains since December. However, the rise was 0.6% less than what analysts predicted, and exports, investment, and private consumption remain down. China’s gradual healing following the pandemic has been “mainly driven by the supply side thanks to continued policy stimulus, while demand remains weak,” according to Bloomberg.

Other links of interest: