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Undocumented Immigrants and Florida: Is It Safe To Travel To Disney This Summer?

A new Florida law targeting undocumented immigrants passed the Senate 27-13 in early May. The new law SB 1718, which Governor Ron DeSantis signed, will take effect on July 1. Some of the key provisions of the new law are making undocumented and documented immigrants reconsider their plans to travel to or work in Florida. Including family travel and vacation trips to Disney.

Potential Consequences For Undocumented Immigrants Traveling To Florida After July 1, 2023

1. If You Are Undocumented And Have A Drivers License From Another State
Suppose you are undocumented and have a valid, nonFlorida driver’s license. In that case, it will not be recognized by the state of Florida. And if you are stopped and do not have a documented legal presence in the United States – even if you have a valid driver’s license from another state – you will be ticketed.

2. If You Bring An Undocumented Individual Into Florida From Another State
If you bring someone Into Florida who has unlawfully entered the United States, including family members, this is a crime.

3. Florida’s Expanded Counter Terrorism Agency
Florida is cooperating closely with the federal government to provide information on anyone whose presence can affect the safety of the state of Florida – including undocumented immigrants.

In addition, SB 1718 has:

  • tougher penalties for knowingly hiring or transporting undocumented individuals in Florida
  • require employers to use E-Verify employment screening if they have 25 or more employees
  • Florida hospitals must collect the immigration status of all patients

Because enforcement of the law has not gone into effect yet, there is no information on how widespread enforcement will be. Still, the law also provides funding for Florida’s undocumented immigration enforcement. Stories are beginning to appear on social media already of random stops of drivers by authorities and being required to provide proof of citizenship.

Florida Is Over 20% Immigrants

  • More than 1 in 5 Florida residents is an immigrant, while one in eight residents are native-born U.S. citizens with at least one immigrant parent. And nearly 800,000 undocumented people live in Florida.

The workforce in Florida comprises a significant percentage of immigrants, both legal and undocumented.

USAToday reports that according to Florida immigration attorney Susan Pai, based in Jacksonville, “the new immigration law also applies to people who lawfully entered the country on visitor and student visas but are not authorized to work.”

Truckers Boycott Florida Against SB 1718

Truckers are rallying to boycott moving produce and goods in or out of Florida over DeSantis’ new immigration law. Spanish language social media is encouraging Latino truckers to refuse to deliver products to Florida or distribute Florida-grown produce outside the state. A trucker boycott in Colorado in 2021 got the desired results and has truckers spreading the word across social media to take a stand against Florida.

Deportation Defense Attorney Mario Godoy

An immigration attorney can help you understand your rights and options. They can represent you in court, negotiate with immigration officials, and help you apply for relief from deportation. They can also help you understand complex immigration laws and procedures and ensure your case is handled correctly.

A skilled deportation defense lawyer can help you resolve the threat of deportation and find ways to remain in the United States legally. Get started on your defense today. Call Godoy Law Office at 630-912-0322 to schedule a consultation with one of the experienced immigration attorneys today.

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