July 19, 2023
Florida’s new immigration law includes penalties for employers who hire people who aren’t legally authorized to work in the U.S. Although, seasonal workers are not specifically mentioned in the law.
Florida agriculture and construction companies are reporting worker shortages following the July 1 implementation of a strict new immigration law.
In the month before the law took effect, Republican lawmakers who had supported the bill tried to quell fears and prevent a mass worker exodus.
"This bill is 100% supposed to scare you," Republican Rep. Rick Roth, who voted in favor of the bill, said during a June 5 meeting organized by the Hispanic Ministers Association of South Florida. "This is more of a political bill than it is policy."
After the meeting, Roth was interviewed by Adriana Carrera, founder of La Familia de Broward, an online Spanish-language magazine. A clip of the interview went viral when tweeted by Thomas Kennedy, a Democratic activist.
"The season is over now in South Florida," Roth said. "You can leave here and come back next season in November. We believe the law is only referring to permanent employees, not seasonal."