Act Now! The White House is on the verge of eliminating the J-1 Summer Work Travel program

A Message from the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce:

We were contacted by CIEE about an important update on the Summer Work Travel (SWT) program and an urgent request for your immediate action. According to multiple sources, including the Wall Street Journal, we now know that the Administration is planning to eliminate the J-1 SWT program, in addition to the J-1 Intern, Trainee, Camp Counselor and Au Pair programs. This action may be taken as soon as early September. We believe this to be a grave mistake–elimination of these programs will have a devastating impact on all of our businesses and the communities that we serve.

CIEE, the Alliance for International Exchange, and the sponsor community are working aggressively to prevent these programs from being eliminated. But we need your help. Employers are our strongest voices in this fight. Sharing your story, your experience with this program, and your struggles in MA to fill these seasonal jobs with American workers is critical.

This is what we ask:
• Call your Senators and Representative and ask them to contact the White House and stop the emasculation of this program. Please call and do not just send an email. A call is immediately registered and therefore, more impactful. Find here phone numbers for your Members of Congress and talking points to help you make short, easy but incredibly important calls and get an effective message across. Once you’ve made calls, alert a colleague to how easy it was and encourage them to do the same.

• Have your CEO or other senior leaders call their contacts at the White House, the Department of State, or Congress using the talking points. If they do not have personal contacts, have them call these numbers:
o White House, Office of Public Liaison: (202) 456-6493
o State Department, Office of Secretary Tillerson: (202) 647-7234

• Join Americans for Cultural Exchange and share your stories there.

This devastating decision could be made in the coming weeks, so we must act now. Our goal is to try to cluster all of these calls into a tight timeframe for maximum impact.

Should you have any questions or would like to talk through this in more detail please let us know. We are here for you every step of the way and thank you for your continued support in J-1 Summer Work Travel advocacy efforts.

Thank you for your continued partnership and dedication to the program. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions.

Author: Mashpee Chamber of Commerce

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