Arlington, Va. (Aug. 20, 2021)
PSC Meets with U.S. Government Officials to Discuss Afghanistan Issues
This afternoon, the Professional Services Council (PSC) participated in a collaborative meeting involving senior officials from the departments of Defense and State, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and industry to discuss time-sensitive issues related to Afghanistan. Today’s meeting was the result of several communications initiated by PSC to the Secretaries of State and Defense and the Administrator of USAID urging greater outreach to the government’s implementing partner community working in Afghanistan. Government officials acknowledged those efforts and planned a series of additional meetings focused on specific issues tied to the crisis in Afghanistan.
Today’s meeting focused on the Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program established for Afghans who worked closely with the U.S. government. During the meeting, Government officials requested that industry leverage their existing human resources data and information to enable the expeditious processing of SIV applications.
“PSC has for several months been receiving, analyzing, and disseminating information to and from the government and our member companies on increasingly urgent issues, including noncombatant evacuation and the SIV program,” said PSC’s Executive Vice President for Policy Stephanie Sanok Kostro. “Through sessions such as the meeting held today, we continue to advocate strongly for solutions that help our member companies and their current and former workers in Afghanistan.”
She continued, “Important topics range from increasing caps for visa programs to allowing additional categories of Afghan workers to apply for those visas (e.g., subcontractors, vendors, grantees) to improving security for and assistance to Afghans at Hamid Karzai International Airport.”
“We will continue our active engagements—involving both government and industry—to focus on the health and safety of American, third country, and Afghan workers and their families,” said Kostro. “Through collaboration with U.S. Government partners, we are fully committed to them.”
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