(NewsNation) — New York City Mayor Eric Adams on Friday declared a state of emergency because of the influx of migrants who have been bused into the city by politicians in other states.
“This is an ‘all hands on deck’ moment,” Adams said, NewsNation local affiliate PIX11 reported.
More than 17,000 asylum seekers have arrived in the city since April, according to a news release. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, both Republicans, have been sending busloads of migrants to sanctuary cities like New York. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis also flew migrants from his state to Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.
As previously reported by NewsNation, many have criticized the governors for what they say is a cruel political stunt. Abbott has defended his actions, though, arguing that the larger cities are better equipped than smaller municipalities along the border to deal with the number of migrants arriving.
However, NYC officials are saying they’re running out of space in city-run shelters and hotels. The Adams administration, the news release said, estimates that the city is on track to surpass the highest number of people recorded in its shelter system. If the pace of migrants coming into the city continues, the city’s shelter census will be over 100,000 in the coming year, officials said.
During a 15-minute address streamed from City Hall, Adams said New York City’s budget is expected to take a $1 billion hit by the end of the fiscal year.
“We need help, and we need it now,” said Adams during the address.
City agencies including the Department of Social Services, Education Department and Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, as well as organizations like the Hispanic Federation, United Way and New York Immigration Coalition have worked with the migrants, Adams said.
“But though our compassion is limitless, our resources are not,” he added.
In the next few weeks, the city will open a Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Center on Randall’s Island that the mayor says will safely house “hundreds” of migrants.
“I will be there to welcome them and to stay with them, to hear their stories,” Adams said. “But unless we take immediate action, that center will be full in days. And we will have to open another and another and another, even as winter weather arrives.”
Noting this, Adams asked for aid from the federal government and state of New York.
“From our federal partners, we need legislation that will allow these asylum seekers to legally work — now, not in six months. And we need a realistic decompression strategy at the border that will slow the outflow of asylum seekers,” Adams said. “We need a coordinated effort to move asylum seekers to other cities in this country to ensure everyone is doing their part, and Congress must pass emergency financial relief for our city and others. Finally, we need a bipartisan effort to deliver long-awaited immigration reform, so we can offer people a safe and legal path to the American Dream.”
From the state, Adams said, they need emergency financial relief. Adams said the city has worked with the governor’s office on identifying additional locations for relief centers and staffing resources.
“We need those to come through now,” he said. “We need the state to act with the urgency this situation demands.”
NewsNation local affiliate PIX11 contributed to this article.