FL Gov Blames COVID Spike On “Hispanic” Farmworkers

Miami’s CBS News affiliate reports:

Farmworkers are pushing back after Gov. Ron DeSantis said clusters of “overwhelmingly Hispanic” day laborers and agriculture workers are the source for Florida’s recent surge in coronavirus cases.

The Republican governor told reporters that migrant workers and Hispanic construction workers have been testing positive for COVID-19, in part, because of cramped living and working conditions.

“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,” DeSantis said during a press conference in Tallahassee.

The Miami Herald reports:

When DeSantis cited outbreaks among farmworkers as a leading driver of the recent surge in COVID-19 cases, he added that a watermelon farm in north central Florida had recently seen a lot of cases.

But Franco Ripple, a spokesman for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, said much of the rise in new cases since June 10 has occurred in counties where there is little agriculture.

“With 12,333 new cases across the state since June 10, naming rural and farm communities as a main driver is not accurate,” Ripple said in a prepared statement. “The governor is cherry-picking data in an attempt to blame farmworkers and agriculture for the spread of COVID-19, by highlighting a small sample size from one farm.”