Judge Walker Sides with Mi Vecino in SB 7050 Lawsuit

Kissimmee, Florida, July 5th, 2023 – Mi Vecino, Florida’s only year-round voter registration organization, is celebrating its first win in their lawsuit against Governor Ron DeSantis after a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction for parts of SB 7050 on Monday. Three Mi Vecino employees are key plaintiffs in the case against DeSantis, each of whom stand to lose their jobs following the enactment SB 7050. 

One of the provisions of the new law makes it illegal for non-U.S. Citizens to touch or handle voter registration forms, directly targeting Mi Vecino’s daily voter registration operations and undermining the constitutional rights of their staff.

“75% of our staff are legal residents and TPS recipients,” shares Alejandro Berrios, one of the co-founders of Mi Vecino. “This law is not only anti-immigrant, it’s also anti-business, anti-job, and anti-American. We’re not afraid to take it to DeSantis in court to fight for our staff and their legal right to work; we’re grateful that Judge Walker upheld our constitutional rights in this decision.”

Governor DeSantis’ decision to sign this bill into law infringed upon the fundamental rights and livelihoods of hardworking individuals including Veronica Herrera-Lucha, the State Director for Mi Vecino, who has dedicated years of service to educating her community about American democracy and facilitating voter registration. 

“I’m proud to uphold the principles of justice and freedom by serving as a plaintiff in this case. I came to America fleeing the chaos and terror in my home country of El Salvador and every day at Mi Vecino I work hard to strengthen our great American democracy by helping my vecinos register to vote,” says Veronica.

Mi Vecino and their team of lawyers from Latino Justice, believe that SB 7050’s citizenship requirement violates the first and fourteenth amendments, and will continue to argue their case in court. 

Supporting Mi Vecino’s legal action is Lucy Rodriguez, a Mi Vecino employee and U.S. citizen who has worked closely with Veronica for two years. Lucy shares her perspective, saying, “The fact that Ron DeSantis wants to take away the ability for my coworkers like Veronica to do their jobs when they’ve done nothing but love our country and work for its betterment is wrong.”

Despite Governor DeSantis’s endorsement of the bill, Mi Vecino remains committed to our mission of promoting voter registration and civic engagement in Florida. 

For more information about Mi Vecino’s legal action and our ongoing work, please visit mivecinoflorida.com

Devon Murphy-Anderson

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