NYC to Use Floyd Bennett Field as Emergency Site to House ‘Asylum Seekers’

Floyd Bennett Field will be used to house “some of the more than 113,300 asylum seekers” who have entered the city, the mayor said.
NYC to Use Floyd Bennett Field as Emergency Site to House ‘Asylum Seekers’
Mayor Eric Adams speaks during a press conference near the site of a parking garage collapse in New York on April 18, 2023. (Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)
Aldgra Fredly
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New York City has reached a leasing deal with the federal government to use Floyd Bennett Field as an emergency site to shelter thousands of illegal immigrants in the city, Mayor Eric Adams said on Friday.

In a statement on Sept. 15, Mr. Adams said that they will use Floyd Bennett Field to house “some of the more than 113,300 asylum seekers” who have entered the city since the spring of last year.

He thanked New York Governor Kathy Hochul for her commitment to reimbursing the city “fully for the use of this site” while also pushing for federal assistance in managing the illegal immigration crisis.

Mr. Adams reiterated the importance of the Biden administration issuing an emergency declaration to enable the allocation of additional space and funding that the city needs to effectively handle the influx of illegal immigrants.

“As I have said before, because we haven’t seen meaningful policy changes that would alter the course of this crisis, we’ve been forced to unsustainably open new site after new site as asylum seekers continue to arrive by the thousands,” he said.

“This is not an adequate solution or any sort of long-term plan by the federal government to this national problem,” the Democrat mayor added.

Crisis Could ‘Destroy’ NYC

Mr. Adams had warned that the illegal immigration crisis under the Biden administration will “destroy” his city, and that he doesn’t see an end to the problem as the Big Apple continues to struggle with an influx of tens of thousands of illegal immigrants from the southern border.

“Let me tell you something, New Yorkers. Never in my life have I had a problem that I did not see an ending to. I don’t see an ending to this. This issue will destroy New York City,” he said on Sept. 6.

Hundreds of illegal immigrants line up outside of the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building in New York City on June 6, 2023. (David Dee Delgado/Getty Images)
Hundreds of illegal immigrants line up outside of the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building in New York City on June 6, 2023. (David Dee Delgado/Getty Images)

More than 110,000 illegal aliens have come to New York City since the spring of 2022, with about 60,000 currently remaining in the city’s care, Mr. Adams said, announcing the opening of a shelter in Long Island City that can house up to 1,000 illegal immigrants seeking asylum.

“We’re getting 10,000 migrants a month,” Mr. Adams said, noting that primarily Venezuelans arrived in the city at first, but now there are also Ecuador nationals as well as Russian-speaking individuals going through the U.S. southern border and coming to New York City.

“Now we’re getting Western Africa, now we’re getting people from all over the globe that have made their minds up that they’re going to come through the southern part of the border and come to New York City,” he continued.

Mr. Adams has estimated that the illegal immigration crisis could cost the self-declared “sanctuary city” $12 billion over three years if things don’t change.
In August, New York City opened a tent shelter on the grounds of the Creedmoor Psychiatric Center in Queens Village to house up to 1,000 illegal immigrants as the city grapples with the influx of people.

The site, which opened on Aug. 15, will accommodate 1,000 male immigrants in two separate tents. Local officials said they expected to receive 100 immigrants on the opening day, the New York Post reported.

“I think if you’ve been paying attention to the number of people coming in, 2,000, 2,500 a week … This place will be full very, very quick,” Zach Iscol, NYC’s Emergency Management commissioner, told reporters.

Ms. Hochul has previously urged President Joe Biden in a letter (pdf) dated Aug. 24 to direct the federal government and help provide the state with housing, support, and work authorization for illegal immigrants.

However, the White House has since pushed back on Ms. Hochul’s public plea, saying its ability to help the state’s illegal immigration problem is limited without congressional action.

Lorenz Duchamps contributed to this report.