[Congressional Record: October 3, 2002 (Senate)]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
21ST CENTURY DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE APPROPRIATIONS AUTHORIZATION ACT--
[ ... ]
[ ... ]
Mr. BROWNBACK. Mr. President, we are on the judicial reauthorization
bill that just received cloture. I was happy to see that taking place.
I draw attention to the body to one particular provision that is
important. It is J-1 visas. These visas are granted to people who were
born in another country, other than the United States, but trained
according to medical standards in the United States, in passing medical
boards in the United States, and then able to serve throughout the
United States. I know the Presiding Officer's State and my State are
dependent on people born in foreign countries being able to provide
medical services in Kansas.
We have 105 counties and 20 that would be medically underserved if
not for this feature called J-1 visas for medically underserved
counties to have medical personnel, as I previously described.
Within the provision of the judicial reauthorization bill, it allows
for 30 J-1 visas on a per State, per year basis to work with
recruitment of medical personnel. My State of Kansas is dependent on
this feature. Twenty of our 105 counties would be medically underserved
if not for J-1 visas. There was a problem within the old program that
the oversight was not sufficient.
After September 11, a number of people were concerned about who was
getting into the United States under these J-1 visas: Are they properly
supervised and properly observed, or is there potential for untoward
elements that would come in this way that might seek to do harm to the
United States? That was an area of concern. We were concerned about
everyone coming to the United States at that point. This was another
area where people had deep concerns.
This program, as we have revised it, has supervision in place to
watch this program and to meet the needs of States like Kansas where we
have significant areas of medically underserved populations and at the
same time meet the security needs of the United States so we do not
allow in an individual who seeks to do harm to the rest of the United
I worked in the Judiciary Committee. We worked on the Immigration
Subcommittee. This bill got through the House of Representatives.
Congressman Jerry Moran from my State worked over there. We have met
everyone's concerns to get this passed through the needs of States such
as my own, particularly for rural States because this is a chronic
issue, with significantly underserved areas, aging population in some
counties that need more and more services and have more and more
difficulty getting medical personnel into the areas. This is working
under the J-1 category for medical doctors. We are using it for medical
technologists. In the future we will need it for broader categories
within health care as well, potentially for physical therapists and
nurses, to get adequate personnel in places that are needed. It will be
a valuable feature, looking into the future.
Overall, the judicial reauthorization is a good bill, one that we
should pass. It is significant. We have not had one of these
reauthorizations for some period of time. It is certainly the time to
be doing this, to bring this issue forward. I commend the chairman and
ranking member and those who have worked very hard in the conference
committee to move this issue forward.
Share this page
Bookmark this page
The leading immigration law publisher - over 50000 pages of free information!
© Copyright 1995- American Immigration LLC, ILW.COM