President Joe Biden recently announced his administration’s commitment to facilitating job opportunities for illegal immigrants who have flocked to New York City.
Bridging the Gap
Following a meeting with Democratic New York Governor Kathy Hochul, the White House released a statement outlining plans for a comprehensive campaign.
This initiative aims to bridge the gap between non-citizens eligible for work authorization and those who have applied for it.
The campaign will provide information on how to apply for employment authorization to help meet the labor demands in New York.
Under current regulations, illegal immigrants must wait 150 days to seek a work permit and then an additional 30 days to receive one.
Supporting the Undocumented Population
This move is part of the administration’s broader effort to offer support and resources to the undocumented population.
The White House intends to send an extra $100 million in aid to New York in the coming weeks.
Robert Law, a former senior official at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services during the Trump administration, criticized the administration’s approach, asserting that sanctuary jurisdictions prioritize integrating illegal immigrants into the workforce over assisting American citizens in rejoining it.
Sending Illegal Immigrants Up State
Meanwhile, New York City Mayor Eric Adams has proposed sending a portion of the estimated 100,000 illegal immigrants who have arrived in the city to federal sites in upstate New York.
While Adams did not specify the exact locations, he expressed his willingness to utilize any available space granted by the federal government, regardless of local or state approval.
A letter from the Department of Homeland Security to Mayor Adams suggested using a hangar at JFK International Airport to house 800 people.
Illegal Immigrants Banned From Hotels and Motels
Nevertheless, challenges persist, with 27 counties outside New York City implementing local regulations prohibiting hotels, motels, and similar establishments from entering contracts to accommodate illegal immigrants.
Concerns about capacity and security, particularly in upstate New York, have been at the forefront of these bans.
Stephen Acquario, the executive director of the state Association of Counties, emphasized the need to address these issues.
A Lack of Space and Information
He pointed out the lack of available space in upstate hotels, which are already serving social services recipients.
Acquario questioned whether adequate information, such as the immigrants’ names, healthcare records, vaccination status, and employment skills, was being considered in the relocation process.
He noted that the current situation reflects a breakdown in coordination between the federal government, the state government, New York City, and the 57 counties, resulting in a chaotic system.
Sexual Assault Concerns
Recent incidents, including accusations of sexual assaults involving illegal immigrants, have intensified concerns.
Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz called for a pause on the transportation of asylum-seekers to the community until security issues could be resolved, emphasizing that trust and good faith had been compromised.
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Source: The White House