Posted on June 8, 2006

Butler Co. Hispanic Community Reacts to Crackdown on Illegal Immigration

WKRC 12 (Cincinnati), June 7, 2006

Butler County’s Hispanic community is reacting to the recent crackdown on illegal immigration.

Many Spanish speakers are simply leaving the county, job sites are still, and church pews are empty.

Yet, some warn there’s an even more concerning trend.

Local 12’s Joelle Girone shows how a breakdown of trust may affect those here illegally and legally.

“The main thing you notice with the people is a sense of fear,” said Father Manuel Viera, Catholic priest.

That fear, according to some, is driving many Hispanics out of Butler County and into surrounding communities.

“We have received calls as to I’m not going to that meeting because . . . ,”said Father Viera. “I will not be at liturgy or mass because..”

Father Manuel Viera says many Spanish-speaking residents are finding it nearly impossible to operate inside Butler County. He says the anxiety is overwhelming, so, people are on the move.

“Looking somewhere else for employment. Some have lost their jobs.”