A week after the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) announced the formation of a coalition to advocate U.S. immigration reform that would boost the number of highly skilled foreign workers and replenish a U.S. manufacturing sector being crippled by a workforce skills gap, four Senators today, led by Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), introduced a bill in the Senate that would increase the annual number of temporary H-1B work visas by 50,000 to a total of 115,000, as reported by the Salt Lake Tribune.
A comprehensive immigration reform policy that provides improved access to visas for high-skilled workers could provide a pathway to citizenship for many immigrants. These skilled employees have the potential to boost American manufacturing companies and help bridge the talent gap. President Obama and various industry groups support such reforms, but they may be facing an uphill battle. Read more
The Boeing 787, commonly known as the Dreamliner, was heralded as one of the most technologically sophisticated new aircraft in the world. But severe technical problems have led to the Dreamliner fleet being grounded across the globe. Can the aircraft recover from this setback? Read more
When it comes to chemicals and toxins, American industry is governed by the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) relic from the Ford Administration. The TSCA has been able to mandate safety testing for only 200 of the 80,000 chemicals manufacturers use today, and has banned or restricted only five of those chemicals: polychlorinated biphenyl (PCBs), asbestos, radon, lead and chlorofluorocarbons.
Needless to say, the TSCA has been on everyone’s mind recently, but no one’s more than consumer groups, parents groups and even the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), which has reported that regular biomonitoring is finding hundreds of industrial chemicals of dubious safety in the bloodstream of most Americans, including newborn babies. Scientists call this “the body burden,” and it’s on the rise. Read more