President Trump and ICE’s crackdown on undocumented immigrants is having a noticeable impact on the consumers and businesses of predominately Latinx and immigrant neighborhoods.
According to Financial Times, Latino consumers have become plagued with the fear that a loved one could be deported, they have stopped spending and started hoarding — just in case. The businesses feeling the real brunt of this financial disruption have been mom and pop stores that cater to largely Latinx communities. These businesses include party supply stores that usually rent out chairs, tables from quinceañeras to backyard parties, according to Financial Times.
“For our businesses that serve the Hispanic immigrant community as customers, they are telling us that their business is down anywhere from a third to a half,” Carlos Gomez, the president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City, told Financial Times. “The immigrant community is very afraid. They don’t know what is going to happen. My feeling is that people go to work and go home. They don’t want to be out.”
The Financial Times reports that it isn’t just undocumented immigrants who are holding onto their money. As anxiety of more deportations and raids grows, immigrants with proper papers or even citizenship are starting to forgo the neighborhood shops they fear could be targeted by deportation raids. The Financial Times reports that even though these immigrants shouldn’t be deported, the fear has grown so great that they choose to avoid the possibility of being rounded up or humiliated by being harassed for papers and proof of residency.
The number of arrests of undocumented immigrants has seen a sharp increase since Trump took office. More than 41,000 undocumented immigrants have been arrested and those with no criminal records have been arrested at twice the rate as compared to this time last year, according to The Washington Post.
You can read the full report here.