New York City’s shelter occupancy has surged to an unprecedented high of nearly 100,000, doubling from the previous year due to the ongoing flow of immigrants into the city, posing a significant humanitarian and fiscal challenge.
According to recent reports from City Hall, the city’s shelters currently accommodate almost 100,000 individuals, with 50,000, the majority, being asylum seekers.
In just the past month, the historic Roosevelt Hotel, which was converted into an asylum seeker welcome center, has processed around 13,000 migrants.
However, the crisis exceeds the staggering number of immigrants and imposes a heavy financial burden on taxpayers. Housing a migrant family in a city shelter costs approximately $385 per night, translating to a daily expense of around $8 million.
The growing crisis, according to Mark Krikorian, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies, will further escalate the financial burden on taxpayers. He has pointed out that the root cause of the problem lies in the immigration policies of the Biden administration.
Krikorian said, “Everybody is scrambling to deal with the fallout from the Biden administration’s policies. The thing that Mayor Adams and others are culpable for is not clearly calling for a change to immigration policy. Adams and other big city mayors are begging for more money from Washington, which solves nothing,”
New York City is slated to receive $104.6 million in grant funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help offset its rising migrant costs.
Nevertheless, Mayor Adams has appealed to the Biden administration to cover the entire expenditure, estimated at around $4.5 billion. The Mayor has criticized the current administration for its lack of effort to curb the influx of immigrants into the city.
The city, grappling with an overstrained shelter system, has 174 sites spread across its area, including 11 Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Centers (HERRCs). Over the past week, more than 2,200 new asylum seekers were processed and accommodated by the city, according to Deputy Mayor Anne Williams-Isom.
Meanwhile, the city has arranged to use ten hotels in Westchester County and upstate New York to help manage the crisis. The Office of Emergency Management Commissioner, Zach Iscol, disclosed that the city has used or identified 1,000 sites for temporary shelters or respite centers as the crisis intensifies.