Miami-Dade was the county I entered at the start of my life in the US. I attended high school as an undocumented immigrant for my first few months. If my family did not have the benefit of legalization after entry, I would have been a DACA student. Miami was also the first to react to the president’s executive order against Sanctuary Cities.
Within hours of the executive order to prevent Homeland Security from funding any city designated as “sanctuaries”, Mayor Carlos Gimenez reacted with his own executive order: Miami Dade federal jails were to comply with federal requests to detain undocumented immigrants.
Gimenez feared jeopardizing $355 million in funding over what is claimed as a $52,000 issue: the cost of holding undocumented persons until the feds can pick them up.
Back in 2013, Miami Dade had refused to detain these persons indefinitely without full reimbursement from Homeland Security. It was a money thing. But, the county was slapped with the designation of a “sanctuary county” by the Justice Department as a result. Miami has been trying to rectify the designation since last year.
Though I understand Mayor Gimenez felt the pressure to protect Miami Dade’s cash flow, Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel didn’t feel the need, nor did New York’s Mayor Bill de Blasio. Both spoke out firmly against any compromise to protecting all people, regardless of where they came from.
Read the full blog post at Faces of Education.