Illinois governor announces order to aid asylum seekers


CHICAGO (WGN-TV) — Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Wednesday a disaster proclamation in an effort to get resources and support to asylum seekers who have arrived by bus in Chicago from Texas.

The governor also activated about 75 members of the Illinois National Guard. He said the proclamation will ensure that the state is prepared to meet the needs of the more than 500 migrants who have arrived so far.

“Let me be clear; while other states may be treating these vulnerable families as pawns, here in Illinois, we are treating them as people,” the governor said in a statement.

On Aug. 31, a group of migrants arrived at Chicago’s Union Station. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, citing the Biden administration and Chicago’s sanctuary city status, said that the city will now be a drop-off location.

In April, Abbott directed the Texas Division of Emergency Management to charter buses to transport migrants from Texas to Washington, D.C. Earlier in August, he directed that New York City be added as a second drop-off location.

Last week, Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser declared a public emergency to help “triage the needs of people arriving” in the city.

According to Abbott’s office, thousands of migrants have been transported to Washington and New York City, providing, as he said, “much-needed relief to Texas’ overwhelmed border communities.”

Abbott cited Chicago’s “Welcoming City Ordinance” as a reason why he selected it as Texas’ third drop-off location.

There has been speculation that Philadelphia could be the next city on Abbott’s list, but his press secretary confirmed Monday that Texas is only sending migrants to three cities at this time.

Democratic Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney‘s administration said the city isn’t aware of any buses headed their way, but the city isn’t expecting to receive any notice if Abbott decides to send migrants that way.

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