NYC migrant crisis: Calls for federal action as city struggles to cope

Over 100,000 migrants have now arrived in New York City since last spring, marking the first time that this number has exceeded one hundred thousand.

According to city officials over 57,000 migrants are currently in the city’s care and that includes 18,000 children.

New York City Management Commissioner Zachary Iscol says that every day is a struggle when it comes to finding housing for those arriving in the city. Iscol says they are expecting 5 more buses with migrants to arrive by 6 am Wednesday.

"We need leadership from President Biden, period," Congressman Jamaal Bowman said.

Congressman Bowman is calling the Biden Administration’s lack of action on the migrant crisis in New York City unacceptable.

Bowman says New York representatives are meeting with the White House on a weekly basis on this issue but says there is no reason President Joe Biden can’t grant emergency work authorization to migrants tomorrow through executive order.

Bowman also hinted that he has heard the Biden administration is slow to act because they are concerned about the political impact.

"It's a politically tenuous issue, but that's not acceptable," Bowman said. "I have heard that from those close to the administration."

Meanwhile, a State Supreme Court judge on Friday ordered state officials to provide more support to the city in this migrant crisis.

The city is to provide the state with a list by Wednesday of state and federal resources it requires to continue sheltering and caring for migrants. The state must respond to the city’s requests by August 15, one day before the next scheduled court date.

Governor Kathy Hochul did not make herself available for off-topic questions on this at a separate event, but Adams says he believes upstate counties should do more.

"We believe our other counties upstate have obligations," Adams said. "New York City's the economic engine of not only this country but the state. And we believe everyone should step up and play a role in this crisis that New York City has been carrying for the most part on its own."

One of the things the city could ask for is more support for migrant students. Right now over 14,000 migrant children are enrolled at city schools.

State education leaders met yesterday with city officials to discuss how to best meet student needs.

Adams says the some NYPD officers are teaching ESL but says New Yorkers should step up.

"If you speak Spanish, there's nothing stopping you from opening a class to teach migrant Spanish and run it at a HERCS," Adams said. "We will give you the room to do so. We can't do this alone."

There are three new emergency housing facilities the city will be opening to house migrants in the coming weeks. Each site will house up to 2,000 asylum seekers.

The state is paying for two of these locations, the former Creedmoor Psychiatric Center and a new center on Randall’s Island.