NEW YORK CITY–After the expiration of Title 42 on Thursday night, there are concerns that the number of migrants attempting to enter the US may significantly rise.
Officials fear that starting Friday, hundreds of migrants could arrive in New York City every day, causing further strain on the already overwhelmed shelter system. To address this issue, Mayor Eric Adams has temporarily suspended some parts of the city’s “Right to Shelter” law.
Under the executive order, the city is suspending rules that set a nightly deadline for newly arriving families to be placed in shelters, and that require families to be placed in private rooms with bathrooms and kitchens, not in group settings.
“Do you know last week we got 4,200 people? We are getting an average of 500 people a day and Title 42 is not lifted,” Adams said. “We could potentially get thousands of people a day in our city. This is just wrong.”
He scheduled a conference call with several neighboring county leaders as the city scrambles to find places to house the new arrivals. There have been heated conversations between the mayor and county executives in Rockland and Orange counties about where to house them.
Protesters were upset that a hotel in Newburgh was proposed to be used to house migrants from the southern border who are being bused to New York City.
Just like in Rockland County, the Orange County executive declared an emergency to prevent the housing plan from being carried out.
A bus filled with migrants arrived at the Crossroads Hotel in Newburgh on Thursday, despite the state of emergency. Additionally, Rockland County was granted a restraining order against the City of New York.
“It’s a fake state of emergency that he himself created,” said Kevindaryan Lujan, Orange County Legislator.
“We wanted to counter the tone that has unfortunately been set by our county executive here that has created a lot of fear mongering, a lot of xenophobic sentiment, a lot of bigotry,” said Genesis Ramos, Orange County Legislator.
“We are going to to challenge all of the legal obstacles that are attempting to be placed in our way,” Adams said. “We are going to challenge them. Because it would set a bad precedent. If someone is saying, in the state of New York, that you are not allowed to come here. That’s just a bad precedent.”
The Legal Aid Society has come out and expressed its concerns saying, “Congregate shelters put families and children at risk of diseases and sexual assault.”
Adams responded and said that while he respects Legal Aid, they don’t always agree.
“I think we should do it without being disagreeable, just raise the issues and we will raise our issues,” Adams said. “The part of the law that states every family must have a kitchen and a bath. When my son went to college in a dorm, he didn’t have his own kitchen and bathroom and he still did a great job. So that’s just not realistic when you get 4,200 people in your city that you’re going to find a place with kitchen and a bathroom, our desire is not to put children and families in dormitory settings. Our desire is to manage in a humanitarian crisis,”
Adams said. “And when you look at the law, what it was designed to do during that time had nothing to do with getting 4,200 people in a week.”