Advance Copy of DOS Interim Final Rule: Exchange Visitor Program – Summer Work Travel

Advance Copy of DOS Interim Final Rule: Exchange Visitor Program – Summer Work Travel

"The Department of State (Department) published an initial interim final rule with request for comment on April 26, 2011 (see 76 Fed. Reg. 23177)(2011 IFR) to amend the regulatory requirements of the Summer Work Travel category of the Exchange Visitor Program. In this second interim final rule (2012 IFR), the Department expands upon and provides guidance on additional regulatory changes and bolsters portions of 22 CFR Part 62.32 both further to protect the health, safety, and welfare of Summer Work Travel Program participants and to reinforce the cultural exchange aspects of the Program to promote mutual understanding in accordance with the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, (Pub. L. No. 87-256, 75 Stat. 527) (Fulbright-Hays Act or Act). The Department has reviewed the comments submitted in response to the 2011 IFR, and this rule reflects those comments. Also, this 2012 IFR reinforces the cultural exchange aspect of the protection to program participants by describing types of job placements that are appropriate and by expanding the list of jobs prohibited under the Summer Work Travel Program. The enforcement of parts of this IFR is delayed until November 01, 2012." - DOS, May 4, 2012  [BUT NOT YET POSTED TO THE FEDERAL REGISTER WEBSITE AS OF 1200 HRS. CENTRAL TIME.]

See also this DOS Press Release: "...Following a Department-wide review of the program, we have taken important steps to install better safeguards to protect American workers and ensure the health and safety of program participants.  To strengthen this short-term exchange, the State Department is publishing an Interim Final Rule (IFR) that will take important steps to improve this program. Most of these reforms will go into place immediately; however, specific restrictions in certain industries will not take effect until November 1, 2012. ..."