HomeFlorida NewsFlorida ready to use Texas’ controversial measure in solving migrant problems

Florida ready to use Texas’ controversial measure in solving migrant problems


The management of illegal immigration has been a persistent challenge that the states across the country are facing, and in order to deal with the problem, some of them have come up with different strategies. In response to the potential surge of illegal immigrants from Haiti, Florida has adopted a controversial measure similar to the strategy Texas adopted in order to solve migrant problems.

Texas’ Strategic Approach to Migrant Management

The State of Texas has been at the forefront of addressing the escalating numbers of migrants with a variety of strategies. One of the strategies implemented was transporting migrants to “sanctuary cities,” to mitigate the economic strains on towns near the border.

Florida’s Response to the Crisis in Haiti

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis took decisive action last week in response to the potential surge of illegal immigrants from Haiti by deploying additional state resources to fortify the Florida Keys and the state’s southern waters.

Florida ready to use Texas’ controversial measure in solving migrant problems

Governor DeSantis unveiled a controversial additional measure, akin to Texas’s strategy, which has ignited a significant debate about the state’s handling of undocumented immigrants, especially those from Haiti. The initiative, colloquially known as “Air DeSantis,” may soon resume, impacting Haitian refugees aiming to find sanctuary in the Sunshine State. DeSantis explicitly mentioned that the state’s transportation program, aimed at relocating these individuals, is set to become operational once again. This program could potentially transport undocumented immigrants directly from their arrival points in the Florida Keys to locations in New England, such as Martha’s Vineyard.

Check also: Gov. DeSantis throws a “jab” at the federal government as he signs bills strengthening Florida’s stance on illegal immigration and criminal activities

The Logistics and Costs Involved

DeSantis highlighted the operational aspects of this transport plan, stating, “We do have our transport program also that’s going to be operational.” He added that for Haitians landing in the Florida Keys, “their next stop very well may be Martha’s Vineyard.” This move, however, comes with a significant financial burden. Past operations under this initiative have seen costs soaring to $35,000 per individual transported, a sum covered by taxpayers.

The governor has previously justified the expense and the ethics of the transportation program, amidst criticisms likening the act to “human trafficking.” He even referenced the teachings of Jesus Christ to support the compatibility of such actions with Christian values during a presidential campaign stop. Furthermore, DeSantis criticized Martha’s Vineyard for its supposed misrepresentation as a sanctuary city, accusing it of failing to welcome the very refugees it claims to support.

Check also: Controversial bill aims to crack down on illegal immigrants with further limiting their rights in Florida

Operation Vigilant Sentry

In response to the unique challenges Florida faces as a maritime state, DeSantis has also launched Operation Vigilant Sentry. This initiative aims to prevent Haitian refugees from making landfall and seeking asylum within the state. The operation has mobilized a significant force, including members from the Florida State Guard, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Florida National Guard, and the Florida Highway Patrol. Altogether, over 250 personnel have been deployed, equipped with additional seacraft, helicopters, and drones to ensure comprehensive surveillance and enforcement.

DeSantis explained the logistical hurdles of repatriating refugees directly to their countries of origin, noting the complexities involved in securing the necessary clearances for such flights. This issue underscores the broader challenges faced by states like Florida in managing undocumented immigration through maritime routes.

Read more