Florida Ramps Up Immigration Enforcement Efforts
As Texas and Arizona surge their resources to keep the lawlessness from the southern border at bay, Florida is expanding its interior immigration enforcement apparatus within its borders. On June 17, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) announced three initiatives to combat the influx of illegal immigration into the state.
The first includes forming a strike force comprised of state and local law enforcement agencies to disrupt the flow of human smuggling and drug trafficking into Florida. In addition, the initiative is tasked with preventing illegal weapons from being transported into the state. So far, the task force has arrested 17 illegal aliens in Northwest Florida for human smuggling and fentanyl possession offenses.
Second, Gov. DeSantis filed a petition to the Florida Supreme Court for a statewide grand jury to analyze international human smuggling networks that bring illegal aliens to the Southwest border and how it impacts Florida. Moreover, it would examine if these smuggling syndicates violated Florida law.
Third, the governor signed Senate Bill (SB) 1808, which bars government agencies from contracting with any organization that facilities the transportation of illegal aliens into the state. SB 1808 also requires law enforcement agencies with a county detention facility to enter the 287(g) program with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
Enrolling more law enforcement agencies in this program will allow local authorities to identify more criminal aliens in their communities and refer them to ICE for deportation, preventing these alien offenders from committing additional crimes.
Furthermore, the bill obliges local agencies to expand cooperation with ICE, such as complying with an immigration detainer and allowing immigration authorities to interview known or suspected alien inmates.
These three initiatives come at a critical time as the border crisis continues to move beyond the border states, bringing adverse consequences for countless American citizens across the country. Additionally, these actions build upon the immigration enforcement directives Gov. DeSantis initiated last April.
Florida’s implementation of these schemes will help keep its residents safe from human smugglers, drug traffickers, gunrunners, and other lawbreakers that have exploited the Biden administration’s lax border policies. Every non-border state should be following Florida’s example of taking immigration enforcement into its own hands.
While the Sunshine State’s decisive leadership will slow the flow of illegal immigration into its communities, the administration should see this as a wake-up call to end its destructive border and immigration policies. The federal government should prioritize American citizens’ safety and sovereignty over illegal aliens.