NYC finally cracking down on disobeying migrants after chaos caused by Texas initiative

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California is facing challenges due to a large number of migrants arriving at its southern border recently. Meanwhile, in Texas, illegal immigration is declining. Governor Greg Abbott has been proactive with Operation Lone Star, a plan aimed at managing the border and curbing unauthorized immigration. A notable part of this strategy has been the transportation of migrants to sanctuary cities and states, a measure seen as one of the most controversial tactics, part of the Operation Lone Star initiative. This move was enforced to alleviate the strain on Texas’s border cities. So far, over 105,000 migrants have been reallocated to sanctuary cities in Democratic-led states, far from the immediate border area.

Texas officials view this strategy as highly effective. They believe they have shifted the challenges associated with immigration to regions previously less affected by it. Since the measure was initiated, Texas Governor Abbott’s goal was to expose Democratic-led cities to the daily realities that Texas faces, highlighting the complexities and costs involved in meeting the basic needs of migrants. Two years into this approach, many of these cities are finding it increasingly difficult to offer even the most fundamental support and assistance to immigrants.

Since April 2022, New York City has received the largest number of migrants from Texas. The Texas governor reported that they transported just under 40,000 migrants to New York City alone. For months now, challenges have been mounting for local authorities in New York City. That’s why they decided to take a tougher stance on the issue and changed direction since Monday this week. A high-ranking official in Mayor Adams’ office declared last Friday that migrants who cannot demonstrate severe difficulties in securing new housing will be required to leave city shelters as soon as this week.

New York City cracking down on migrants

This marks a shift towards more stringent policies. Previously, migrants were allowed to seek a new shelter placement after 30 days. Now, they must provide evidence of significant hardships to qualify for an extended stay. Without this proof, they cannot stay in shelters beyond the initial 30 days. This policy adjustment stems from a contentious court agreement in March concerning the city’s obligation to provide shelter. The agreement stipulates that adult migrants can be removed from shelters if they do not secure alternative housing within 30 days and fail to show compelling reasons for their situation. However, this regulation does not apply to migrant families with children

Know the criteria

For single adult migrants and adult families, the criteria to qualify for extended shelter due to extenuating circumstances include having a signed lease, being involved in an immigration process that starts within 30 days after their notice period ends, scheduled medical procedures, or, for migrants aged 18-20, evidence of full-time enrollment in a public school. Additionally, demonstrating significant efforts towards resettlement, such as submitting job applications, applying for work authorization, and actively seeking housing, can also help them maintain their shelter placement.

Camille Joseph Varlack, the Chief of Staff for Mayor Adams, explained in a video briefing last Friday that as of the previous week, around 200 migrants whose 30-day notices had expired were given the opportunity to present any extenuating circumstances to extend their stay in the shelters.

NYC migrants who cannot demonstrate severe difficulties in securing new housing will be required to leave city shelters as soon as this week
Migrants in front of a migrant shelter in NYC, credit: Deposit Photos

More than 200,000 migrants in the city since January 2022

Since Mayor Adams began his term in January 2022, about 200,000 migrants made New York City their ‘home’, putting a severe strain on both the shelter system and the city’s financial resources. Currently, the city is responsible for approximately 65,000 migrants. To manage this load, in September last year, the Adams administration implemented a policy requiring single adult migrants to reapply for their shelter placement after every 30 days.

On Friday, city officials announced that around 6,500 migrants had been issued new notices to vacate. These migrants can stay in the shelters if they demonstrate either a significant effort to resettle or an extenuating circumstance.

NYC migrants who cannot demonstrate severe difficulties in securing new housing will be required to leave city shelters as soon as this week
Migrants entering a bus in Texas, credit: Deposit Photos

Numbers to vary each week

According to Camille Joseph Varlack, 29 migrants have sought extensions and undergone interviews. Of these, 14 were granted extensions while 15 were denied, potentially leaving 186 migrants facing eviction from their shelters as early as this week, unless more apply for and receive extensions. On Friday, when queried about how many migrants have secured stable housing after leaving city shelters, Varlack admitted she did not have that information

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