Senate Democrats ask Governor to apologize after blaming COVID-19 spike on minority farmworkers
Ron DeSantis stops vaccinations by occupation; leaving farmworkers struggling.

Florida farmworkers
Florida is home to nearly 5 million Hispanics.

Senate Democrats called on Gov. Ron DeSantis to issue an apology Monday for his latest comments alleging that Hispanic farmworkers are to blame for the rise of COVID-19 cases in Florida.

Last week during a press conference, DeSantis said the source of many of the new COVID-19 cases were from “overwhelmingly Hispanic farmworkers and day laborers,” adding:“Some of these guys go to work in a school bus, and they are all just packed there like sardines, going across Palm Beach County or some of these other places, and there’s all these opportunities to have transmission”.

Senate Democrats chastised the Governor’s remarks in a collective letter addressed to him.

“These statements could be characterized as either misinformed insensitive statements or shameful scapegoating of an entire ethnic community, but either way are offensive and inappropriate comments from our State’s Chief Executive,” the letter said.

The letter went on to ask DeSantis for a public apology to Florida’s Hispanic community.

“On behalf of the nearly five million Hispanics living in Florida, we ask you to rescind and publicly apologize for the hurtful and inaccurate comments you made last week,” the letter added.

The letter also recognized the contributions made by Hispanic workers in Florida’s agriculture industry.

“Hispanic farmworkers are the backbone of the agricultural industry in Florida, ensuring the availability of high quality, low cost food products for sale and distribution both domestically and internationally,” the letter continued. “The contribution of these workers, along with those working in the construction and building trades, generate billions of dollars of economic activity annually for our State.”

Senate Democrats called on DeSantis to accept responsibility for the health, safety and wellness of Florida residents.

“During this pandemic we ask you to refrain from blaming poor results on those who most need the state’s assistance right now and urge you to take the better approach, which is to accept responsibility for policies and decisions that have led to the increased public health crisis in our state and the failures of the State’s unemployment system,” the letter said. “In short, as the Chief Executive of this state the buck stops with you when it comes to managing the health, safety and welfare for Florida’s residents.”

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the Florida State Capitol. After a go with the U.S. Army, the Orlando-native attended the University of Central Florida and earned a degree in American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. He'd love to hear from you. You can reach Jason by email ([email protected]) or on Twitter at @byJasonDelgado.


3 comments

  • BlueHeron

    June 22, 2020 at 8:38 pm

    Hasn’t he already moved on from blaming migrant workers in that rise in cases to the “young ones”?
    The #’s probably indicate that.

    Unless I’m deaf, I never hear anything from DeSantis about what we should be doing. What is the REAL story regarding guidance, training, testing (FOR EVERYONE), treatment, etc
    All that is talked about is how many positive cases, open beds there are and how many deaths. So, who cares how many people are sick as long as the ICU beds and morgues aren’t full?

    Wouldn’t it be awesome if he rearranged his “to do list” to include guidelines and shout it from every rooftop. I’m tired of hearing mask, social distance,sanitize. Many of us are doing that but a lot more are not. Only the “old people are dying” (not true) so no big deal.
    Do the “young ones” know that if they have tested positive,they are highly contagious and need to quarantine? Everyone they’ve been in contact with needs to be tested?
    Do they as well as the rest of the citizenry know that they could be asymptomatic and even more contagious?
    If DeSantis is too inconvenienced by this covid nonsense, then I’m sure he has a grown up with more than half a brain from FDOH who could give a daily update that includes the proper information and guidelines.

    I drove through my coastal city the other night. First weekend of opening. It was wall to wall people. Packed in the bars, sidewalks packed. If I saw a handful of masks, that was a lot. Scared me to no end. THIS is how covid will get worse each day. This is where the illness and potential death will come from. This is why business owners will undoubtedly have to close at some point. These situations happening all over the country is why we will never be healthy physically and economically, At least not until we can get some real top-down leadership.
    For now, we can only rely on local leadership and hope for the best.

  • Sonja Fitch

    June 23, 2020 at 7:25 am

    Just another racist blame from duffus Desantis! Duffus Desantis does the common good only if humiliated at his dangerous decisions! May god have mercy on your soul Desantis!

    • Just sayin'

      June 23, 2020 at 7:58 am

      You’re a broken record. Don’t you get bored?

Comments are closed.


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