Global Talent Bridge Partner Blog

News on practice and policy affecting internationally trained immigrants and refugees

The #UntappedTalent Campaign Calls for Policies that Create Inclusive Economies

Tuesday October 26, 2021 | by Natalie Torres

This September, the IMPRINT Coalition launched the #UntappedTalent: Inclusive Economies for All campaign to spotlight the need for policy reforms that increase the economic mobility of immigrants and refugees in the United States. The campaign launched last month with the support of 15 partner organizations and has since grown to include 40 additional organizations who have pledged their support.

As part of the #UntappedTalent campaign, IMPRINT hosted a Week of Action earlier this month to call for the passage of federal legislation directing the U.S. Department of Labor to conduct an interagency study of the barriers that limit the employment opportunities of immigrants and refugees with international credentials. The #UntappedTalent Week of Action brought together more than 20 partners from across the country to advance policies that are inclusive of all workers and open pathways so that everyone has a fair chance of reaching their educational and career goals.

Throughout the week, advocates participated in storytelling initiatives, engaged in a social media forum hosted by the IMPRINT Coalition to discuss policies like the Improving Opportunities for New Americans Act—the first bipartisan effort of its kind and a critical step toward ensuring the economic inclusion of immigrants and refugees, and reached 20 Senate offices to raise awareness of the urgent need to build a workforce that works for all. IMPRINT worked with partners to identify champions for the Improving Opportunities Act in the Senate, and the legislation was met with strong bipartisan support from many Senators.

IMPRINT also collaborated with member organizations and other partners to highlight the stories of internationally educated immigrants and refugees impacted by systemic barriers when they try to rejoin their professions in the U.S.—like Greisy, an attorney in the Dominican Republic whose law degree and experience weren’t recognized here. Greisy felt as though she “was going to have to start from zero” when trying to rebuild her career in the United States. The untapped talent of Greisy and others like her deprives local communities and employers of the diverse experiences of immigrant and refugee workers, and takes a significant economic toll on individuals, communities, and the nation.

The #UntappedTalent campaign will continue to build on the Week of Action’s advocacy efforts to advance policies that recognize and value the skills, credentials, and experiences of immigrants and refugees. Pledge your organization’s support for the #UntappedTalent campaign to receive updates about future opportunities to take action.

Natalie Torres is a Policy Analyst at WES Global Talent Bridge.