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Surging illegal immigration in the US: NYC shuts down school to house 2,000 migrants, Elon Musk says ‘they are coming for your homes next’

Lashing out at the NYC administration for shutting a school to shelter immigrants, American billionaire Elon Musk tweeted, "This is what happens when you run out of hotel rooms. Soon, cities will run out of schools to vacate. Then they will come for your homes."

The residents, teachers, and parents of students are fuming over the authority’s decision to house 2000 ‘illegal immigrants’ in a High school, in New York City’s Brooklyn. The City Hall administration has shifted the immigrants from a controversial tent shelter at Floyd Bennett Field to James Madison High School. The authority claims that the move comes amid concerns that a massive migrant tent at Floyd Bennett Field would collapse from heavy downpours and strong winds. 

Consequently, the illegal immigrants started moving shortly before 5 p.m. on Tuesday (9th January). They were ferried in more than two dozen school buses which lined up at the field after students were asked to leave and not come to school on Wednesday (10th January). The 500 families totalling around 2000 immigrants will be occupying the school’s gymnasiums and auditorium ‘overnight’ as per the officials. 

(The ‘illegal migrants’ were ferried in more than dozens of school buses, Image Source – New York Post)

City Hall spokeswoman Kayla Mamelak said, “To be clear, this relocation is a proactive measure being taken out of an abundance of caution to ensure the safety and well-being of individuals working and living at the centre.”  

Mamelak added. “The relocation will continue until any weather conditions that may arise have stabilised and the facility is once again fit for living.”

However, the move triggered a massive outrage with locals expressing that the illegal immigrants could be lodged in schools for months. Additionally, locals argue that after schools, city officials could start lodging illegal immigrants in their homes, a fear which was also aired by Elon Musk while reacting to the latest developments. 

“This is what happens when you run out of hotel rooms. Soon, cities will run out of schools to vacate. Then they will come for your homes”, Elon Musk posted on X reacting to a video of busloads of illegals arriving at the school.

They have not been vetted and have criminal records: Locals lambast officials

The people living in the neighborhood of the James Madison High School launched a scathing attack on the city officials. They fear that the pretext of storm to lodge illegal immigrants in schools is a ‘test run’ for times to come and the immigrants could continue to stay in the schools for months. 

A resident who identified himself only as Rob was quoted by NY Post, “This is f—ed up. It’s a litmus test. They are using a storm, a legitimate situation, where they are testing this out. I guarantee you they’ll be here for the entire summer. 1,900 people is getting thrown into my neighbourhood, half a block from where I live and we don’t know who they are.” 

He added, “They’re not vetted. A lot of them have criminal records and backgrounds and we don’t even know.” 

An angry mother harangued the immigrants as they deboarded a school bus asking whether they would feel good that the students had been kicked out of school adding that she hoped they had a good night’s sleep.  

The woman, who only identified herself as Michelle, screamed at the buses, “How do you feel? Does it feel good?”. 

She continued, “How does it feel that you kicked all the kids out of school tomorrow? Does it feel good? I hope you feel good. I hope you will sleep very well tonight!”

Another resident said, “How do you feel stealing American tax money?” 

Reacting to the city officials’ takeover of schools for housing ‘illegal immigrants’, netizens slammed the US government for bludgeoning immigrant crisis and expressed their fear of impending law and order problems. 

Based on unconfirmed reports, some users shared concerns that the authorities have begun to ask residents to be ready to lodge immigrants in their homes as they did on previous occasions. Reacting to it, Elon Musk reiterated his warning.  

In another tweet, Musk said, “They’ve run out of hotel rooms, are kicking kids out of school for illegal housing, and now they want your homes too.”

Additionally, Council member of the 48th District of New York City, Inna Vernikov released an official letter describing the development as “unacceptable”. Vernikov called on the government to stop using public schools as a shelter ever again.

The letter stated, “Our public schools are meant to be places of learning and growth for our children, and were never intended to be shelters or facilities for emergency housing. There are approximately 4,000 students who attend Madison High School. Their parents are rightfully concerned. This will agitate local residents, disrupt the entire school environment, and place a tremendous burden on our families, students, school administrators, and staff.” 

(Councilmember slams the City officials demand an immediate stop on using public places like schools for housing migrants, Sourced from X handle libsoftiktok)

It added, “As an elected official representing this community, I demand a full stop to using our public schools as a shelter ever again. I urge my colleagues in government to join me in this effort.” 

The controversial tent that houses illegal immigrants

It is important to note that the 2,000-bed tent facility at Floyd Bennett Field which was built on the deserted runway of Brooklyn Airport had faced similar issues in the past because of extreme weather. In December 2023, it saw heavy rain and gusting, 55-mph winds that shook metal bolts and hinges loose from the ceiling.

Regarding the problems, Venezuelan migrant Reibi Rodrigues said, “The wind was so strong, it looked like the tents were going to give way and be blown apart. When we told security we were afraid of an imminent collapse, they told us the door was open and we could leave when we wanted. But where were we going to go?”

City Hall officials stated that they had an evacuation plan in place and were ready to execute if needed. However, according to them, there was no flooding reported at the former federal airfield during the December rainfall. They added that they were unaware of bolts and hinges falling from the top of the tents. 

(Video Courtesy – CBS New York)

It is important to note that the Shelter has been controversial since its inception. In November, the initial group of migrants relocated to the vacant airfield in Brooklyn following negotiations between Governor Kathy Hochul and the White House. The agreement allowed for the establishment of a tent city at the site. While some critics expressed concerns about the isolated location, city officials went ahead with their plan because of the overwhelming influx of thousands of migrants into New York City.

According to critics, Councilwoman Joann Ariola, the shelter is a waste of taxpayers’ money and it was ‘common sense’ that it would face extreme weather conditions.  

According to reports, around 70,000 migrants are currently under the city’s supervision out of the 162,000 who have arrived in the five boroughs since the spring of 2022 from the US border.

The city erected migrant tents at Randall’s Island in Manhattan and the former Creedmore Psychiatric Center in Queens. However, as of Tuesday, officials maintained that these locations are less exposed and are not deemed susceptible to severe weather conditions.

Democrat Mayor Adams stated that while the tents at the other two sites are “anchored” to the ground, the ones at Floyd Bennett Field are only held down by “heavy stones.”

Democrat Mayor Adam’s 60-day limit order worsens lodging crisis

Additionally, the chaotic scenes in New York City worsened further on Tuesday when several migrant families who were lodged in a Manhattan hotel were served eviction notices in line with Mayor Eric Adams’ 60-day limit order. As per reports, around 4,800 eviction notices have been sent to migrant families in shelters. Apparently, as per the order, immigrants can stay for 60 days at a place and then they will be lodged at another place.  

Notably, the Democratic Mayor Adams had imposed the limit in October for homeless migrant families. According to Adams, the move was necessary to relieve a shelter system overwhelmed by asylum-seekers crossing the southern U.S. border.

The 60-day limit on shelter stays had been imposed to ease the pressure on New York City’s strained shelter system. After eviction, the migrants can reapply for shelter and the city administration provides them an alternate accommodation. 

Those evicted from the Manhattan hotel may find accommodation at the Roosevelt Hotel, another midtown facility repurposed as a centre for incoming migrants. According to city officials, migrant families can submit new applications for an additional 60-day stay in the shelter system at this location.

A 40-year-old mother from Colombia, Mayra Martinez is among those evicted from a hotel accommodation given by the US government. 

She said her three children have mixed feelings about leaving the Row. The family had been living at the hotel for more than a year and had saved up enough to rent a three-bedroom apartment in nearby Newark, New Jersey, as reported by AP.

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Paurush Gupta
Paurush Gupta
Proud Bhartiya, Hindu, Karma believer. Accidental Journalist who loves to read and write. Keen observer of National Politics and Geopolitics. Cinephile.

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