Skip to main content
Nevada NewsStatements and Releases

Congressional Black Caucus Chair Rep. Steven Horsford, Nevada Business and Community Leaders Call On President Biden to Extend Work Permits to Long-Term Immigrants 

By June 17, 2024June 18th, 2024No Comments


Advocates Urge Biden to Take Executive Action to Sustain Nevada’s Economic Growth

LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Today, Rep. Steven Horsford (D-NV) joined the Latin Chamber of Commerce, the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, Make the Road NV with the American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC) for a roundtable discussion highlighting President Biden’s landmark announcement on work permits for long-term immigrants, reported to take place Tuesday, June 18.

This event took place as President Biden considers executive action this week to offer work permits and legal status to long-term immigrants, including those married to U.S. citizens who have lived in the U.S. for at least 10 years. Additionally, the administration prepared a plan to streamline the process for DREAMers and other undocumented immigrants to obtain temporary visas. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program protects around 530,000 undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children from deportation. 

According to reports, it is gaining momentum in the White House as President Biden considers taking action soon. The U.S. is home to 10.6 million U.S. citizens who live in mixed-status households, with hundreds of thousands of impacted U.S. citizens in states like Florida, Nevada, Arizona, Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Georgia. Long-term undocumented immigrants have lived on average for 15 years in our country working, paying taxes and raising American children. Each year, undocumented immigrants earn $92 billion in household income and contribute almost $9.8 billion in federal, state and local taxes.

At the event, lawmakers, business leaders and community advocates, showcased how this policy will help keep families together, shield immigrants from exploitation, boost the economy and grow the workforce. Below are some excerpts from the discussion:

U.S. Rep. Steven Horsford (D-NV):

“When I look at your faces all I see is that this is your home and I see a whole lot of opportunity. I see a whole lot of hope in wanting to do all the right things, to contribute to this country that you know as yours, to continue to our community, fact that you’ve been able to start a business, get an education, do all the things that we want done, and as a business owner, to hire people to grow our economy. 

Yes, we need to secure the border. Yes, we need to make sure that there are more legal pathways that people can earn their right towards citizenship. […] But that doesn’t mean that we should leave the spouses who have been living here, who are married, who have families, who have homes. We shouldn’t leave the dreamers and those who came here at no fault of their own, who are doing everything right. We have teachers and nurses and people in the military and in law enforcement who are dreamers, and unfortunately, because of this lawsuit that’s out there that I know is a real concern.”

James O’Neil, Legislative Director, American Business Immigration Coalition:

“President Biden is set to announce a significant change in immigration policy tomorrow. That announcement is the result of a campaign over the past year and a half that has brought together business and advocates including the groups you see in the room today. The Latin Chamber, Make the Road, and PLAN have all been instrumental in bringing us to this point. This action is worthy of a lot of celebration. It is good for Nevada’s immigrant communities, it is good for Nevada’s economy, and it is good for America. We need to build on the President’s actions by even further expanding work authorization to all our long term immigrant contributors.”

Alma Perez, DREAMer, Make the Road NV:

“I am one of hundreds of thousands of undocumented youth left out of DACA when DACA was first introduced. In 2012, I was too young to apply when applications reopened. In 2020, I still couldn’t apply, because I entered the country in 2008. Despite this, I attempted to apply, but it was frozen. […] Now, without a work permit, I find myself going home crying from back pain because of my job. My options are extremely limited. Having a work permit would give me the opportunity to have health care, completely focus on my studies without worrying about whether I would be able to use my degree, and apply for jobs without the anxiety of knowing that my application could be denied solely due to my legal status.”

Peter Guzman, President of the Las Vegas Latin Chamber of Commerce:

“We have all these opportunities, but we can’t hire some of these folks for various reasons. And the ones we do hire, you know, they pay taxes and do all that, but they don’t get anything in return. It seems very unfair […]I have staff here that still gets worried about whether they, you know, can be deported or not. And that just seems silly to me.”

Donnie Gibson, CEO CivilWerx and member of the Associated General Contractors:

“There’s a huge demand for skilled workers, there’s a lot of skilled work that can be pulled from that immigration side, and there’s a lot of them that are currently here working and constantly looking over their shoulder. I’ll also take any positive bite of the apple that helps change people’s lives. I have a friend that I have worked with for years, he’s married, he’s raised his family here for decades, and he doesn’t go back to see family because he fears that he would not be able to return to the country. And so he’s missed out on a lot of his life, and also constantly living in that fear of someone not taking him away from his wife and his beautiful children. So I’m here on behalf of the business industry to help support some positive change.”

Expanding work permits for long-term contributors is overwhelmingly popular among Americans generally. Nineteen U.S. Senators; 80+ members of Congress; 300+ employers, CEOs and associations have also endorsed work permits for long-term immigrants, along with labor organizations like SEIU, UNITE HERE and the Culinary Union, the Teamsters and United Auto Workers (UAW). NYC Mayor Eric Adams and Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson recently led a bipartisan letter of over 40 mayors urging the president to extend work permits, and over 140 Latino state and local elected officials from across the nation have urged the President to act.



American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC) is a bipartisan coalition of 1,400+ CEOs, business owners, and trade associations across 17 mostly red and purple states. ABIC promotes common sense immigration reform that advances economic competitiveness, provides companies with both the high-skilled and low-skilled talent they need, and allows the integration of immigrants into our economy as consumers, workers, entrepreneurs and citizens.