Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently announced a series of legislative proposals to Fla. lawmakers that would allow the state to help curb illegal immigration and protect the employment and quality of life of its citizens.

In a significant step forward for the state, Gov. DeSantis’s proposals included increasing penalties for human smuggling, ensuring illegal aliens do not vote, and, most importantly, requiring all employers in Florida to utilize the free and easy-to-use online employment eligibility verification program E-Verify.

E-Verify is an internet-based system operated by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA).

The online program is free to employers and available in all 50 states. It provides an automated link to existing federal databases to help employers determine the employment eligibility of new hires and the validity of their Social Security numbers.

If passed by the state legislature, Gov. DeSantis’s E-Verify mandate would not only allow but require local businesses to take an active role in ensuring compliance with immigration-labor laws, protecting their local, state-wide, and regional labor markets, protecting Floridian wages, fortifying the dignity of work, and improving the overall quality of life of their communities.

In 2020, again at the behest of Gov. DeSantis, Florida passed an E-Verify law that required all government contractors and certain private employers to use the verification process. Admittedly, Gov. DeSantis stated that the first E-Verify law (which exempted employers who maintained documents required by E-Verify from actually using the program) has “not been effective enough.”

Gov. DeSantis stated:

If you remove the enticement of employment, then they’re not going to want to come illegally to the state of Florida. So, that’s a huge, huge issue.

Florida Voice News explains,

The governor went on to explain that local governments have nonprofit groups create ID cards for people in the state illegally.

“And that’s just a way to try to evade the current state law,” DeSantis said.

The Gov. added that his legislative proposal included provisions that would ban local governments from funding nonprofits to create IDs for illegal aliens who hope to circumvent state law.

Additionally, the potential E-Verify law would make it a state felony to use false identification in obtaining employment and mandates the license(s) revocation of any business that violates the newly recommended E-Verify requirements twice within a two-year period.

Also included in Gov. DeSantis’s legislative requests to state lawmakers were proposals that would increase penalties for human smuggling, eliminate out-of-state tuition waivers for illegal aliens, require the collection of immigration status and costs to provide medical care to illegal aliens, and finally, pass a bill asking Floridians to swear under penalty of perjury that they are a United States citizen when registering to vote.

Mark Glass, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner, said he believes the governor’s initiatives will help keep Floridians “safer than ever,” stating:

Human smuggling, drug trafficking, and a host of other criminal activities are steadily spilling across the Southern Border and into our state, as bad actors seek to exploit the hard-earned wealth and hard-won freedoms of our citizens for criminal gain.

You can read more about the story here.

Updated: Thu, May 11th 2023 @ 3:23pm EDT