Guam Surpasses 5,000 H-2B Workers

October 31, 2023

Guam Surpasses 5,000 H-2B Workers

The number of H-2B workers on Guam has now surpassed the 5,000-worker mark last seen in the early 1990s. This number may increase to 6,000 to 7,000 H-2B workers in the next fiscal year. The influx of H-2B workers not only represents a crucial boost to Guam’s construction capacity but also underscores the island’s continuing economic development.

Joel Manalo Lugue, originally from Pampanga, Philippines, is the 5,000th H-2B worker to be registered on Guam during the military buildup and is now employed by 5M Construction Corporation.

“Exceeding 5,000 H-2B workers marks a significant turning point in this Administration’s efforts as we forge a path toward a more accessible, efficient, and beneficial H-2B program. Through the Governor’s firm leadership, and in partnership with the Philippine government, in the last year, we made substantial improvements to the H-2B program which has contributed to a more streamlined process. We continue to work with the Philippines’ Department of Migrant Workers to establish an office in Guam and a Labor Attaché,” said Guam Department of Labor (GDOL) Director David Dell’Isola. “As military construction booms and H-2B labor expands, this unprecedented growth will allow Guam to fill critical employment gaps in other high-demand markets and foster economic prosperity for the island.”

Registration fees for H-2B workers fund several activities such as GDOL training programs and services, workforce housing inspections, and registered apprenticeships with training through the Guam Community College, and sustain program activities without reliance on the GovGuam General Fund.

Outside the Fence Projects

H-2B workers are available to work on construction projects in the civilian sector, including projects relative to commercial buildings, home construction, and government facilities. The Leon Guerrero-Tenorio Administration worked with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to reverse the 2016 H-2B crisis that resulted in the unprecedented denials of all H-2B visa applications and to update policy guidance to facilitate the availability of supplemental manpower for smaller contractors in the civilian sector.

For more information, contact the Alien Labor Processing and Certification Division at 671-475-8013 or

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