Security Through Regularized Immigration and Vibrant Economy Act (STRIVE)

It dealt with securing the borders, strengthening interior security, improving employment verification; a reformed worker program, fixing the VISA system, and helping hardworking and deserving individuals attain legalization.

Securing our borders

The STRIVE Act increases enforcement personnel on the border.

It also requires a thorough evaluation of information sharing, international and federal-state-local coordination, technology, anti-smuggling efforts, and other border security initiatives to ensure that we are doing everything possible to bolster border security. 

Strengthening interior enforcement

The bill increases penalties for crimes committed by immigrants, including those related to smuggling and gang activities. 

The legislation includes provisions to combat passport and visa fraud, and it increases penalties for trafficking in fake documents. 

The bill also stiffens penalties related to illegal immigration.

Bolstering employment verification

The STRIVE Act sets up an employment verification system whereby employers would be required to confirm each potential employee’s eligibility to work.

The new system would eventually apply to all workers and all new hires, and would be rolled out in phases, beginning with critical infrastructure employers and large employers. 

The legislation increases penalties against employers who do not comply with the new system.

New worker program that reflects realities of our workforce

The new bill sets up a new worker program for low-skilled workers, when a U.S. worker cannot be found to fill a needed job.

It addresses the failures and problems of past worker programs and charts a new course that better protects workers, while more effectively and efficiently meeting the needs of employers. 

The program mandatesstrong workplace protections.

In addition, employers would be required to provide foreign workers withthe same wages and working conditions enjoyed by U.S. workers.

Workers also would have the ability to change jobs and eventually get on a path to legal residency, if they choose. 

The worker visa would be valid for three years and renewable once.

Reforming a broken visa system in a way that protects families

The STRIVE Act overhauls the family-based and employment-based immigration system to reduce backlogs and inefficiencies. 

It also addresses employment needs in shortage occupations, such as nursing.

Earned legalization for hardworking, deserving individuals

Under the legislation, undocumented workers, who pay a fine and pass extensive and thorough background examinations, would be eligible for conditional status with work and travel authorization for six years.

If, during those six years, the worker remains employed, continues to be an upstanding member of the community, learns English and civics, pays any owed taxes, and leaves the country and re-enters legally, they would be sent to the back of the line to wait their turn for permanent visas.

H.R. 1645 also includes the DREAM Act and AgJobs, as introduced in the 110th Congress, increases resources for the immigration court system and facilitates naturalization of members of the armed forces.