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Along with the first Ohio Tech DayOn Friday, September 24, the Ohio Business for Immigration Solutions and OhioX released a report that examines the role immigrants play in the state’s tech industry.

The research results of New American Economy note an increase in the refusal rate for H-1B visas in Ohio, from 8.2% in 2013 to 21.3% in 2019, as part of the problem of attracting skilled tech workers to the state.

The H-1B visa allows American employers to hire foreign professionals to work in the United States when qualified Americans cannot be found.

The research results, according to a statement from the Ohio Business for Immigration Solutions, underscore the need to create an immigration system that meets the state’s critical technology workforce needs.

The Business Immigration Organization is a coalition of more than 50 Ohio businesses, trade associations, chambers of commerce, and economic development groups that promote immigration to Ohio.

The 2019 H-1B data addresses a trend before the COVID-19 pandemic effectively stops most immigration. In 2020, the refusal rate for H-1B petitions was 13.4%.

Rising refusal rates “keep highly skilled workers from entering Ohio and filling critical workforce gaps at a time when Ohio has more than 91,000 job vacancies in the region. STEM industry, ”the report says, adding that for every unemployed STEM worker in Ohio, there are 13.8 STEM-related job postings.

Immigrants made up only 4.6% of the state’s population, but made up 17.8% of software developers, 10% of self-employed STEM workers and 7.1% of computer systems analysts in 2019, according to the report. .

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