Stonington, Maine, lobster dealer Hugh Reynolds often has trouble filling vacancies at GreenHead Lobster LLC. Sometimes he can find enough local workers to fill year-round positions, but often he has trouble finding enough reliable workers come summer.
"Good people have full-time jobs," Reynolds said.
So six years ago, he began looking abroad for some of his workforce. He worked with an international hiring agency to recruit foreign students who held J-1 visas to work during school vacation months. This year, he employed six Serbs. Reynolds said it's been an ideal solution. The J-1 visa workers he's employed mainly have been reliable and hard workers, and they then go home.
"You don't have to lay them off or anything," he said.