Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a Republican, led the effort to pass legislation aimed at discouraging illegal immigrants from moving to Florida. However, officials from the Mexican government oppose the enactment of SB 1718 in the state.
Mexico’s government issued a press release stating that criminalization is not an effective solution to address undocumented immigration. They highlighted the contributions of immigrants to Florida’s economy, society, and culture.
Under SB 1718, Florida counties and cities are prohibited from providing financial assistance or official identification documents to individuals who cannot prove their lawful presence in the country. The law also invalidates out-of-state licenses issued to illegal immigrants and requires certain hospitals to determine immigration status during admissions or registration.
The new law also imposes penalties on employers who knowingly hire or retain undocumented immigrants without verifying their employment eligibility through E-Verify.
Mexico’s Foreign Ministry expressed objections, raising concerns about human rights, potential hate crimes, and the increased criminalization of undocumented immigration.
This public objection is the latest development in an ongoing disagreement between Mexico and Governor DeSantis. Mexico has previously explored possible legal responses to Florida’s policies regarding the relocation of migrants.
Mexico’s government warned of potential negative consequences for U.S.-Mexico diplomatic relations while pledging to allocate additional resources and provide legal support to Mexican citizens residing in Florida.
Governor DeSantis, a potential Republican presidential candidate, has enacted over 200 new laws, many of which focus on illegal immigration. These laws include penalties for employers who hire undocumented immigrants and requirements for hospitals to inquire about patients’ citizenship status.
DeSantis’ stance on immigration aligns with the policies established by former President Donald Trump, and he has also expressed commitment to completing the Mexican border wall.
According to a Reuters report, the Mexican government vowed to protect undocumented Mexicans in Florida, condemning xenophobia, white nationalism, and the unjust criminalization of migration.