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Government of Mexico expresses concerns on Florida’s anti-immigration law

Mexico City, Mexico — Mexico has expressed its disagreeance and concern regarding a Florida anti-immigration law. The Ministry of Foreign Relations says they outright reject the law Law SB1718 signed on May 10, 2023 by the Governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis.

The Government of Mexico, through the General Consulate of Mexico in Miami and the Consulate of Mexico in Orlando, expresses its rejection of measures that lead to acts of discrimination and racial profiling regarding the law, which entered into force on July 1.

Although the Government of Mexico respects the state legislative processes and measures in the United States of America, it is considered that SB1718 will affect the human rights of thousands of Mexican children, exacerbating hostile environments that can lead to hate acts or crimes against the migrant community.

This measure does not reflect their valuable contribution to the economy, society and culture of Florida, and the country.

Criminalization is not the way to solve the phenomenon of undocumented immigration. The existence of transnational labor markets, as well as the intensity of commercial and tourist ties between Mexico and Florida, cannot be ignored by measures inspired by sentiments of xenophobia and white nationalism.

Policies of this nature also have a strong impact on the bilateral relationship between Mexico and the United States, as they show the reluctance of certain actors to identify joint solutions that invite collaboration.

Both countries have made an effort to jointly build paths of tolerance, security and respect, from which SB1718 distances them, provoking feelings of intimidation and fear in the migrant community.

“The Government of Mexico, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will use all the resources at its disposal to defend the rights and dignity of Mexican people in Florida. Our assistance, consular protection and legal advice actions will be reinforced, and we will continue to look after the interests of our entire community, regardless of their immigration status,” the Government reported in a statement.

With the support of civil society organizations active in the defense of human rights, Mexico will identify and register possible cases of violations of the rights of Mexican nationals.

Likewise, it will inform the migrant community and disseminate the effects of Law SB1718 through community forums. Mainly, through the 24-hour attention of the Center for Information and Attention to Mexican People (CIAM), the Government of Mexico will provide personalized guidance to affected people (1-520 623 7874), as well as through the Assistance Program Legal Assistance to Mexican Persons through External Legal Advice in the United States of America (PALE).

The training of consular personnel will be strengthened, emphasizing the scope of SB1718, the dissemination of messages and recommendations through the “Know and Exercise Your Rights” strategy that promotes knowledge of the basic rights of our community, in order to provide support from the most high level of legal actions taken by victims of acts of harassment, violence, abuse, discrimination of all kinds and racial profiling.

These actions are the spearhead of the Mexican Government’s strategy to demand respect for human rights and continue to ensure the interests and well-being of all Mexicans residing abroad, regardless of their immigration status.

On Monday, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador also expressed his concren regarding the Florida law.

“Migrants are the ones that allow the development of peoples in the world. For this reason, instead of mistreating them, repressing them, expelling them, we must protect them,” he said before the recent promulgation of the anti-immigration law promoted by Republican Governor Ron DeSantis.

“Only for political, electoral purposes, for wanting to look good by deceiving that immigrants are the ones who cause misery in the United States —all of which is false— they dare to make these reforms on the eve of elections,” he explained.

In a morning press conference, the president indicated that this country developed thanks to the work of migrants and that they must be respected .

“It is the migrants who allow the works that are needed to be carried out, the infrastructure that they need. It is the workforce that makes America great,” he noted.

He rejected Governor DeSantis’ proposal and called not to vote for politicians who promote racism and discrimination.

“We are against the immigration reform of DeSantis, the governor of Florida, who is against immigrants. Not a vote for DeSantis. He who does not love his homeland, he does not love his mother, not a vote to those who despise migrants,” he said.

“We cannot remain silent. (…) He is for the wall, for the ill treatment of migrants. He aspires to be a candidate for the presidency for the Republican Party and hopefully the citizens of the United States, of the Republican Party, know what is really happening,” he added.

Migrants, he reiterated, are people who seek to earn an honest living and are not responsible for drug trafficking in that country.

“It is a great falsehood that has been spread through manipulation media in the United States that migrants carry drugs. That is completely false.

“They take advantage of the lack of information of some sectors of the American people and of the great manipulation that exists through the newspapers, even the most famous ones,” he remarked.