Miami, FL — Today, the Florida Immigration Reform Coalition responded to President Trump’s announcement to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program, opposing the decision to remove the thousands of individuals that help make Florida’s economy stronger. The coalition called for Congressional solutions that instead harness the power of the foreign-born individuals eligible under DACA.
“Removing nearly 800,000 DREAMers from our economy, including over 46,000 in Florida alone, will have immediate negative ramifications all across our economy,” said Julio Fuentes, President & CEO of Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “This not only hurts those who are directly affected, it also affects the thousands of Floridians who live and work alongside them. My hope is that Congress will work quickly to remedy this backwards decision and bring forth better immigration solutions in the future.”
The coalition is working with New American Economy (NAE), a bipartisan organization that supports immigration reforms which help both American and foreign-born workers build a better economy.
In a brief released on Friday, Spotlight on the DACA-Eligible Population, NAE found that:
- As many as 46,105 Floridians are currently DACA-eligible.
- Despite the rhetoric claiming undocumented youths are a drain on the Florida economy, 90 percent of the DACA-eligible population who are at least 16 years old are employed.
- Florida’s DACA-eligible population earns almost $1.4 billion in total income annually.
- Florida’s DACA-eligible population contributes more than $214.2 million in total taxes annually, $120.6 million of which goes to state and local tax revenue in the state of Florida.
So far, NAE petitions to oppose DACA repeal have garnered more than 1,200 signers across the state of Florida, and more than 20,000 nationwide.
“The American way is not to slam the door of opportunity on those for whom we have held it open,” added Dr. Ed Moore, President of Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida.
“We are a nation that builds on immigrant successes. This decision flies in the face of that fact and the many economic indicators that demonstrate the powerful impact DREAMers have brought to our state,” said State Senator Rene Garcia (R-Hialeah). “Removing them is closing a window that our economy can’t afford. I implore that our Representatives in DC help find a solution that harnesses foreign-born talent in the near future.”
Leaders in the NAE Florida Coalition include:
- Dr. Ed Moore, President of Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida
- Dr. Peter Wish, Sarasota Manatee Airport Authority Commissioner
- Larry Williams, Owner and Managing Partner of Larry Williams Consulting
- Arnie Alonso, Chief of Staff, Mayor of the City of Hialeah
- State Senator Rene Garcia, Chair of Board of Hispanic Caucus Chairs
- Julio Fuentes, President & CEO of Florida Hispanic Chamber
- Carlos Hernandez, Mayor of the City of Hialeah
- Mandy Llanes, Chairman of Hialeah Chamber of Commerce
- Steve Marin, President & CEO of Marin & Sons
- Evelyn Perez-Verdia, Founder of PolitcalPassion.com
- Will Ward, President of Captain’s Finest Seafood, Gulf Fisherman’s Association Board Member
- Juan Zapata, Former Commissioner of Miami-Dade County
- JC Planas, Former Florida State Representative
- Carlos Carrillo, Executive Director of Associated General Contractors of South Florida
- Andres Rodriguez, Venezuelan Business Owner
- Terry Gibson, Principal of Northswell Media