This morning, in Hollywood, Florida, at least six people died after a nursing home they were in lost power due to hurricane Irma. It’s suspected the lack of air conditioning caused them to overheat and die.
Firefighters have evacuated 115 people from the home called the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills. Some were found in critical condition including those struggling to breathe. Police are also checking 42 other nursing homes and assisted living facilities in the city.
But for some people, power outages are the least of their worries. Some individuals are at risk for being arrested because of their illegal immigration status or criminal backgrounds.
Before Hurricane Irma hit Florida, the Sheriff’s office warned their deputies would check IDs at every emergency shelter.
Last Sunday, the Sheriff of Polk County, Florida, Grady Judd, was sued after his office threatened to jail anyone with a warrant who sought shelter from Irma. The plaintiffs are Nexus Services and one of their employees, Andres Borreno, both of whom are from Virginia and help people detained by immigration services.
Borreno was helping undocumented immigrants escape the storm and went to one shelter where Judd’s deputies demanded a background check from him before allowing him inside. Judd says he refuses to change his policy.