All PERM jobs will require some form of travel for the new employee. It is simply part of the reality, as employers are looking to attract only the most highly skilled specialists into their firms. They will not just hire anyone—that’s the whole point of PERM existing in the first place.
The opportunity for travel is both a blessing and a curse. It really depends on the person: those with a family will not want to travel across the country just for a job that might pay well but would take them away from their families. This goes for domestic workers and foreign aliens alike. On the flip side, some prospective employees would relish the opportunity to travel for work. These are usually younger and more rootless types who don’t mind where they live as long as life stays exciting.
In terms of PERM advertisement there has been an ongoing debate about the merits of posting travel requirements in the job listing or not. Some companies decide to post the travel requirements in the domestic job posting but neglect to inform an interested alien of these requirements. What often happens is an employer will file a job advertisement that declares extensive travel is required. This statement will be contracted in their ETA 9089 application for the alien worker, which will not declare anything about travel. This leaves a gray area of contradiction that is open for interpretation. Is there not travel at all? Or did the employer purposefully neglect to put in travel requirements for the alien in order to make the job sound more appealing.
Contradictions Are Not Accepted By the Courts
In any event, this kind of activity has not proven successful across the board, and has in fact drawn the attention of some legal entities in the States that defend domestic workers’ rights.
The Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals, or BALCA, has long held that this kind of practice is unfair to domestic workers. Their logic is that domestic workers are more likely to be discouraged by the reality of travel requirements, while aliens who are unaware of it will apply without care.
It is ironic, then, that BALCA recently went against this logic and actually spoke out in favor of listing travel requirements. So what is the correct position?
Employers must know that being truthful in their applications is the most important thing. If travel is not a requirement of the job, then do not list it in any job offerings. If there is a potential for travel, then being clear about it is important. At the end of the day, advertising for the job must be consistent, otherwise people will get the impression that the employer is trying to abuse the immigration system and cheat a qualified American worker out of a job.