Hispanic Federation Denounces Florida’s Anti-Protesting Bill


Frederick Velez, III
212-233-8955 Ext. 412

Yesterday, Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law HB 1 “Combating Public Disorder” – legislation that was designed to limit the right of free speech for all Floridians. Hispanic Federation President and CEO, Frankie Miranda, issued the following statement regarding this shameful piece of legislation:

“Yesterday, Governor DeSantis signed into law an anti-democratic bill with the sole purpose of silencing anyone in Florida that wants to voice their opinions on an issue. Under the guise of protecting citizens from riots, Governor DeSantis uses the threat of imposing criminal penalties on protesters to chill free speech and infringe on the right of citizens to assemble.

"HB 1 increases penalties for anyone that damages Confederate monuments and protects anyone who injures or kills someone taking part in a protest. Additionally, the law makes cities and municipalities liable for damages incurred during protests – a move that will make jurisdictions less inclined to approve permits for protests and demonstrations.

"Instead of solving the issues that matter deeply to all Florida residents: making housing more affordable, improving our education system, expanding access to healthcare, and protecting the environment, Governor DeSantis and the Florida legislature prioritized silencing communities of color and making sure that those arrested for protest-related offenses stay in jail until their first court appearance.

"As we warned when Georgia signed its voter suppression law last month, what happened today in Florida is part of a national effort to disenfranchise and silence black and brown communities across the United States. We will continue to fight back against any attempt to restrict the rights of the communities we serve across the United States.”