The Mexican government is taking notice of a law signed by Florida GOP Governor Ron DeSantis that targets undocumented immigrants in his state. In broad terms, that law threatens to effectively push such individuals out of society, making it even more difficult — through harsh penalties — for these people and families to find work, transportation, health care, and other basic services.
On the health care front, DeSantis’s law includes the punitive demand that health care facilities collect information specifically on the costs of providing care to undocumented individuals, and in context, further isolating these groups here is obviously another part of Republicans’ campaign to villainize them. There are also feared possibilities of overbroad provisions against so-called human trafficking being used against individuals even giving an undocumented family member of theirs a ride, and migrants’ usage of ID cards, even if issued somewhere else in the United States, is also generally blocked, which could feasibly threaten to escalate any encounters with local police that undocumented immigrants experience.
A statement issued recently by Mexican authorities on the occasion of DeSantis’s law taking effect notes the threat of the situation escalating to hate crimes and other forms of action against the affected individuals. The comments also outline the Mexican government’s ambition to help support and protect the legal rights of those DeSantis is targeting.
“On behalf of the Government of Mexico, the Foreign Ministry will use all resources at its disposal to defend the rights and dignity of the Mexicans in Florida. We will be enhancing our consular assistance and protection and legal advice, and we will continue to look out for the interests of our entire community, regardless of their immigration status,” that government said, adding some examples: “With the support of civil society organizations involved in defending human rights, Mexico will identify and register potential cases of violations of the rights of Mexican nationals. It will inform the migrant community and publicize the effects of SB1718 through community forums.”
The government also argued more broadly that criminalization that targets undocumented immigrants just isn’t the answer. Read the Mexican statement in full here.