Biden Administration Migrant-Friendly Southern Border Policy Creating Splits Among Democrats; NYC About to Eject 4,500 from Shelters

The Biden Administration may have thought that substantially liberalizing asylum rules to allow 30,000 entrants per month would be a twofer: they’d be suppressing low-end wages and assuring members of the professional-managerial class a supply of nannies, housecleaners, yardmen, and Uber drivers and were creating future Democratic party voters.

They might have talked to Angela Merkel first. Less than a year into Biden’s new program, established via executive order, the Democrats are already getting overt criticism (RFK, Jr.) and quiet rebellion (New York City major Eric Adams) from their own ranks, and it was predictable.

Germany took in nearly 1 million Syrian refugees in 2015-2016. This was a humanitarian measure since the country was war-torn and large numbers of Syrians were using any means possible to get to Europe. Merkel supported taking in immigrants because the birth rate in Germany is well below reproduction level and Syrian had very high education standards, so optimists hoped the Syrian new-comers could become productive guests and potentially citizens.

But hope is not a plan. Germany wasn’t even prepared to house and feed so many arrivals; there were reports of some camps being on the level of slums, with the refugees also unsure of what was coming next. There seemed to be little to no programs to assimilate the Syrians, most of all teaching them German. What good does it do to bring in on average educated immigrants and not have a means for vetting skill levels and setting up tracks to get as many as possible into jobs? Some German pundits are recommending banning the right-wing party AfD now that it mioght come to power. Remember that it was the migrant crisis that gave them their impetus.

NBC outlined the new Biden scheme:

The humanitarian parole program, announced in January, allows up to 30,000 people from Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua and Venezuela to be admitted into the U.S. each month “for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit” on a case-by-case basis, according to the Biden administration. Under the program, migrants are allowed to stay in the U.S. for up to two years and must go through an online application process, have a financial sponsor and undergo background and security checks.

Almost 160,000 Cubans, Haitians, Nicaraguans and Venezuelans have arrived under the parole program through the end of June, according to the administration.

RFK, Jr., who visited border town Yuma, Arizona in June, explained that the migrants were overwhelmingly not Hispanic, were overwhelmingly coming for economic reasons, and that the asylum system is a joke, and it looks like by design. RFK, Jr. also described how we have effectively outsourced our border policy to cartels. This discussion starts at 1:01:00:

An opinion piece in the Hill by a recently retired border patrol chief pointed out:

President Biden’s “No More Wall” executive order not only halted construction of former President Donald Trump’s wall, but it also defunded a whole system of border security, including cameras, lights, motion detectors, sensor equipment and access roads. This has left agents with none of the tools they need to do their job of securing the border.

The NBC story added:

A total of 21 Republican-leaning states have challenged the policy, calling it “unlawful” in an amended complaint in February. They wrote that President Joe Biden “has effectively created a new visa program — without the formalities of legislation from Congress.”

District Judge Drew Tipton in Victoria, Texas, a Trump appointee, will begin hearing arguments challenging and defending the program’s legality Thursday.

Now to the story, Uncertainty for Migrants as 60-Day Deadline to Leave Shelters Looms. from THE CITY, on how New York City’s plans to deal with migrant overload includes busing them elsewhere.

By Gywnne Hogan. Originally published at THE CITY on August 230, 2023

Near his shelter in Bushwick, migrant Yohandry Marquez said he doesn’t know where he’ll go when his time there is up.Gwynne Hogan/THE CITY

More than 4,500 adult migrants living in city shelters are fast approaching a deadline when they will be ejected from where they currently live, thanks to a dramatic policy shift announced in July that’s sparking alarm and concern among some people and optimism in others.

At a Brooklyn shelter at 455 Jefferson Avenue, a converted commercial space, at least 533 residents have received the 60-day warning notices, city officials saidat a recent City Council hearing.

The notices, highlighting cutoff dates beginning in late September, instruct shelter residents to go to the Roosevelt Hotel, the city’s main intake for newly arriving asylum- seekers, to “apply for another housing assistance option, which could include a faith or community based organization or placement in a hotel in upstate New York.”

Migrants at the Jefferson Avenue shelter who spoke with THE CITY shared notices they had received, on NYC letterhead with no agency specified, and said they don’t know what to do next.

“It will be chaos,” said Yohandry Marquez, speaking in Spanish outside the shelter on a recent afternoon. The 25-year-old migrant from Venezuela said he suffers from scoliosis, which makes it hard for him to work more than a few hours a day and difficult for him to save enough to rent a place of his own.

“It’s going to get ugly,” Marquez predicted.Spokespeople for Mayor Eric Adams and city agencies involved in the efforts to house migrants did not respond to requests for comment.

Copies of the warning letter shared with THE CITY promise that “a case worker will be reaching out to you in the coming days to explore your options for the future, including connecting with family, friends and other networks. The City is able to facilitate your travel to another destination.”

Marquez shows the 60-day notice he received about leaving the shelter where he’s been staying.Gwynne Hogan/THE CITY

In July, the city expanded its contract with the controversial private contractor DocGo to provide casework services at some migrant shelters, city records show.

Dr. Ted Long, who is playing a key role coordinating migrant response from his post as a senior vice president at NYC Health + Hospitals, has touted the additional attention migrants get once they’ve received eviction notices.

“We ask, ‘how can we help you? And what people are asking us is they want certain tools in order to be able to work,” Long said at a recent press briefing. “Our focus is on giving people what they want, and those are the specifics of what they’re telling us they need.”

But more than a dozen migrants at two city-run shelters who received eviction notices said that they were offered bus or plane tickets to other cities, and were given little guidance beyond that.

“Nada,” said 44-year-old Wilmer Barrios, who said he was recently hospitalized and was told he needs a gallbladder operation, but is delaying it while his housing is up in the air.

“I don’t have any idea what I’m going to do,” Barrios said in Spanish. “I just keep thinking about winter. I don’t know if they’re going to wait until people end up in the street.”

Mayor Eric Adams announced the new 60-day limit on shelter stays for migrants in mid-July, as the number of people in shelters soared to more than 104,000 people, including 54,000 asylum-seekers.

In the month and a half since, the shelter population has continued to climb, with more than 110,000 people in shelters, including nearly 60,000 migrants, as of Aug. 20.

On Day 61

The 60-day warnings are among a host of changes the city has implemented as the shelter population has more than doubled over the past year due to the influx of asylum-seekers from countries all over the world, including Venezuela, Ecuador, Mauritania and Sudan.

Attorneys for Adams and Gov. Kathy Hochul, and advocates for homeless New Yorkers, are in ongoing discussions before a Manhattan Supreme Court judge, debating the city’s shelter obligations under a decades-old court decree

Tensions have flared between Democratic leaders at the city, state and federallevels over how each arm of government has handled the new arrivals, as public sentiment has shifted toward frustration at the situation.

The Roosevelt Hotel arrival center was overwhelmed in recent weeks, with migrants spending multiple nights outside for a week straight during a heat wave in late July.

The Adams administration has yet to detail how the city will handle the combined influx of migrants kicked out of shelters returning to the Roosevelt Hotel, as well as new arrivals, hundreds of whom are still showing up in New York daily, at the same time.

“The question that we haven’t reached is what happens on day 61,” said Joshua Goldfein, an attorney with The Legal Aid Society who advocates on behalf of homeless New Yorkers. City officials have told him the first asylum-seekers will be evicted from their current shelter placements on Sept. 23.

“What they won’t say is whether they will promise to offer anything at all,” he said.

Thankful to US

But not all migrants who spoke to THE CITY were dreading their final days in city shelters.

Some who have been able to find stable work said they were hopeful about finding a place to rent before their ultimate eviction date. Though many who spoke to THE CITY had been in the U.S. long enough to begin to apply for work authorization, none had done so, and were instead working under-the-table in construction and day labor, as food delivery workers for Uber, or in restaurants.

“I don’t want to return to another shelter,” said Overt Palomino, 28, from Venezuela, who’s been bouncing around various shelters and hotels since his arrival in New York City in October. “Not everyone is as lucky as me. I’m saving money to rent something, because I can,” Palomino said in Spanish.

He added: “I’m thankful to the United States for all the help I’ve gotten.”

Yoxander Duarte, 27, another Venezuelan asylum-seeker, said he was already calling around to people he knew about renting a room and pinching pennies to be able to rent a place.

He said his plan is to “keep working, saving cash so when it’s my time to leave, wherever I can find a place, I’ll rent,” Duarte said in Spanish, snapping his fingers.

Migrants, like residents in the traditional shelter system, have moved multiple times in their months here, often with little to no warning before being told they had to move. The adults currently subject to eviction from the system have been in city shelters for several months, and have already been shuffled around between Randall’s Island, the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, various hotels, and other emergency shelters during their months in New York City.

“All the shuffling, historically it reduces people’s ability to move on,” Goldfein said. “In the long term it ends up costing the city money, to keep shuffling people around rather than letting them stay in a stable place [so they can] get together what they need to move on.”

New arrivals to the Bushwick shelter have also been warned their days are numbered. Mohammed Hasan, a 28-year-old student who fled war-torn Sudan, arrived in New York City in mid-August. Hasan said that on his second day in the shelter he was told he would have to leave in two months.

“There’s nothing to say,” he said in French. “We’ll see after the two months, where exactly I’ll go, I don’t know.”

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  1. Joe Well

    >>160,000 Cubans, Haitians, Nicaraguans and Venezuelans

    All countries the US government has seriously messed with for decades or even centuries. The solution is to lift sanctions and pay serious reparations to the people of those countries who actually stay physically present there.

    But of course the point isn’t to provide a solution and our government elites love a constant low level of swirling international crisis.

    1. Commander McBragg

      The good news is that the US/WEF/EU own goal of cranking up a war in eastern europe and blaming Russia while goading China as well has seriously blunted the sanctions hammer.
      All the middle weight powers like India and Turkey and even Israel are well placed to play all sides. Mexico is far less subservient than once was the case. Which says something about the opening for local sovereignties.

    2. Adam Eran

      Between 1798 and 1994 the US was responsible for 41 changes of government south of its borders, creating a constant stream of political and military refugees. Then NAFTA came along, and–as you might guess, shipping subsidized Iowa corn down south to bankrupt subsistence corn farmers–in its wake reduced real Mexican median income 34%–a figure not seen in the US since the Great Depression.

      People complain about the undocumented, but I’d settle for an end to all the meddling.

  2. Joe Well

    >>which makes it hard for him to work more than a few hours a day and difficult for him to save enough to rent a place of his own.

    Why do publications like this insist on perpetuating the myth (and everyone on the ground, at least below a certain age and level of family wealth knows is a myth) that a single person working full time in something other than finance could ever hope to rent their own apartment in metro NYC (median rent: $3750)? Or almost anywhere in the country?

    1. russell1200

      Metro NYC? How about almost anywhere in the US where you can actually find work. The name of the game has been room mates/housemates for a really long time.

  3. Pat

    The street homeless in the city is getting reminiscent of the early eighties. It isn’t just the numerous shelters that were found to house migrants that is overwhelmed here. Adams and company not really having both a plan and the operational capability to deal with their sixty day shelter ultimatum is not surprising. But then the national government hasn’t had a workable plan for decades, so they aren’t alone.
    I shouldn’t enjoy that a big solution is sending migrants elsewhere, but it does amuse me that Adams is being a good Democrat and not making these relocations as pointed and directed as the border governors were by deliberately sending mass numbers to so-called sanctuary cities. Personally I would be busing them en mass to the homes of major media figures with tents and sleeping bags and to the White House and the Capitol in DC with nothing additional. But I want there to be a demand for a realistic AND a limited migrant program. (The PMC can pay real wages for child care, garden and cleaning services.)
    Hochul is trying to pretend this isn’t the problem it is, but she’ll also get worn down and have to face reality soon. If the border states send migrants to other Blue states in similar numbers as to NY, Biden’s plan is going to be another liability to his support there as well. And yes it could happen before Election Day. (And this is a plan that will probably be more successful in destroying Biden than the multiple Trump indictments.)

    1. lyman alpha blob

      My city has been housing asylum seekers sent to Maine from the TX border in a basketball arena that is unused in the summer. When the season starts up again, they have to go elsewhere, not really sure where. A few months ago, some of the asylum seekers staged a protest at city hall over their living conditions, despite having a roof over their heads, a cot to sleep on, and food to eat. Their living conditions are much better than those of the burgeoning homeless populations (whose ranks they may be joining if so many people keep being sent with no plan about how to house and feed them all for the long term). You can see the tent cities getting bigger on a daily basis now. Given all that going on, the asylum seekers protest sort of went over like a lead balloon.

      1. digi_owl

        Wasn’t Foxconn trying to offload some factory buildings?

        Could turn those into asylum barracks. /s

        1. ambrit

          I have been arguing now for well over a year that many of the collapsing malls would make decent “migrant detention facilities.” Let them out for work and chaperoned shopping excursions. Otherwise, lock them down until they show enough proficiency to pass the citizenship tests.
          Such a ‘closed environment’ would be perfect for indoctrination purposes.
          Just look at the FEMA Re-education Camps for inspiration.

          1. Katniss Everdeen

            So let me see if I’ve got this straight.

            “We” should purchase vacant commercial real estate properties at their current inflated “values” (bailing out the panicking CRE moguls in the process), and then rehab them as domiciles for illegal migrants while they become “proficient” enough to be granted “citizenship.”

            While these illegal migrants are learning “civics” from someone, presumably compensated by “us,” they will get “jobs” (except for the 26-year-old guy with scoliosis, who will just become a permanent ward of the state) working for “employers” who will make bank paying them substandard wages. (The wages and overtime they don’t steal, that is.)

            What money they don’t send to the coyotes who brung ’em or family in the “old country,” they will “save” for a security deposit on a rental owned by some slumlord like blackrock or invitation homes.

            Is that the plan?

            As far as I’m concerned, every last dime they make should be turned over to the taxpayers to pay for their current keep. That’s how it works in the real american world. When they complain they can’t ever get ahead, we give ’em a T-shirt that says “I came to be bezos and all I got was this lousy T-shirt.”

            I’d imagine there will be calls for “reparations” a few generations down the road, but IBGYBG so gavin newsom’s or chelsea clinton’s kid can deal with it.

          2. Joe Well

            I know you’re joking but…Citizenship tests?? Have you ever seen the civics exam portion of the naturalization process? Things like being able to recite the names of the major belligerents in WWII?

      2. Pat

        I don’t entirely blame the asylum seekers here (not that I believe most would have qualified as actually needing asylum without it being as blanket as it is). The Asylum Advocates and support groups here are clueless regarding numerous things. In the couple of discussions I have seen where Homeless Advocates are present you can almost see them frantically trying not to roll their eyes at the demands being made by the Asylum advocates on behalf of the migrants. They have no clue at the state of the city and the wages for available jobs, the cost of housing, the difficulties of getting needed supplemental income and services for the working poor. One tried to mention how many of their “clients” are working and still cannot afford housing and adequate food and the problem of getting on the Medicaid rolls for healthcare. It was essentially handwaved away. They just kept demanding immediate working papers, jobs and real housing.

        1. lyman alpha blob

          Yeah, that’s what’s happening here too – they are demanding to get work permits quicker so they can get out of the temp housing. The city is experiencing a boom in hotel construction so there is a demand for workers – because corporations located businesses in a place where there weren’t enough people to fill all the new jobs, but they didn’t want to be left out of the “boom”, so full speed ahead with the (over)construction of rich people housing and hotels. I’m sure the chamber of commerce is whispering in the governor’s ear to keep the asylum seekers coming, while the cities are trying to tell the governor there’s no housing and the schools are overflowing and we can’t take any more people.

          And you nailed the problem, same one we have here. Even if they give out work permits early, the jobs on offer don’t pay nearly enough to afford the going rate of even a modest apartment. Once you start packing 4 or 5 or 8 people into a studio or one bedroom apartment, or likely for some, in a tent, the current accommodations might start looking pretty good.

          I have no idea how to fix this, but I do know you can’t have a cohesive society with all the massive wealth disparity currently going on, which only exacerbates the immigration problem. Not in the US, and not in Venezuela or Honduras, etc., either. People getting rich in the US is quite often what caused the problems in the native countries immigrants are fleeing from.

  4. Commander McBragg

    This is called disciplining labor. If the working masses, white black, brown or whatever vote for a populist and complain too loudly about conditions and pay, The Dems will get another working class that will vote the right way.

  5. ChrisRUEcon

    I think about all these migrants getting bussed to Dem-controlled sanctuary cities, and wonder why no relevant Dem politician has taken the step to introduce laws that would jail any vehicle operator and impound any vehicles used for such purposes. I bet the squalid lot who dispatch buses to sanctuary cities would have a hard time finding operators willing to do their bidding after the first few arrests and impoundings. Sadly, the squalid lot receiving the immigrants would prefer to feign kindness for tribal-virtue-signaling points instead.

    1. Jeff

      Dem cities are getting what they want.. Now they’re complaining about it. Isn’t that the story? Why should border states bare the entire burden of failed national policies? As a Californian, id love to see us ship people over to New Jersey.

    2. divadab

      “Sadly, the squalid lot receiving the immigrants would prefer to feign kindness for tribal-virtue-signaling points instead”

      Excellent description of the Biden “administration” – treason disguised as virtue.

  6. JonnyJames

    US criminal foreign policy once again creates some of the largest refugee crises in history. US “intervention” in Syria (war crimes etc. See: UN Charter); the US debacle in Afghanistan (more crimes); US destruction of Iraq, Libya, the US/UK/Saudi war on Yemen, and continued support for the slow-motion genocide of Palestine etc. etc. – the atrocities keep coming and displaced people keep coming.

    Related to these crimes is the outright theft of Afghanistan’s (as well as other countries) central bank reserves AND the imposition of (again illegal, unilateral “sanctions”) siege warfare against the poorest nation on earth. Respect for human rights and the rule of law? Yeah right…

    The empire benefits in multiple ways; they use migrants as a political football, to divide and distract the public, endless sources of easily-exploited, vulnerable cheap labor, and they blame the victims and blame the govts. of victimized countries etc.

    On the other side of Atlantic, we have more US crimes: the siege warfare against Cuba, Venezuela (unilateral sanctions are prohibited under UN Charter). Venezuela’s reserves and gold were stolen as well. The “sanctions” have caused huge economic problems, sickness and deaths, and thousands to flee. The western mass media BS says it is the Maduro govt. fault.

    So, if we in the US don’t like the D policy for immigration, we can “vote” for the R faction. That’s your “choice” in our so-called democracy. No matter, things will just get worse, as they have been in recent decades.

    1. Felix_47

      Our international policies have something to do with ir but no one wants to talk about the real problem….insane population growth in the sending countries…
      Just insane. I spent some time in Honduras a few decades ago and even then the only way to survive was to get to the US. It was not the government….the people had multiplied far beyond the capability of the land to sustain them. Same in India, Paki, Afghanistan where I spent some years.

      1. IECG

        The United States had less than 4 million inhabitants at the time of its founding. The West had a demographic boom first and now they forget it.The rest of the world is still making that demographic transition. If the rich countries have a problem with that, set an example and reduce their population, at least, by an order of magnitude.

      2. JonnyJames

        How typical and convenient, blame the victims. Maybe it’s time to bomb some more countries into the Stone Age and reduce the “surplus” population eh. And the US gov can steal more gold and cash from foreign central banks. Can you afford to “donate” some more $$ to the Pentagon? Maybe you can donate some more $ to Israel, so they can ramp up their genocide Palestine. Israel says the Palestinians breed too quickly. They need to “mow the lawn” once in a while

        Interesting how the “surplus” population happens to be brown and black folks and poor whites, like Ukrainians etc. I hear Ukraine has had a drastic population decline recently.

        1. Not Again

          Please let me know the last time we bombed China or Mexico or India.

          “A Department of Homeland Security report in 2021 estimated that the top six countries of origin for undocumented immigrants were Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, India, Honduras and China.”

          1. Dr. Nod

            I assume asylum seekers would not be considered illegal by the DHS until they were turned down for asylum. Most of the people discussed in the article would not be considered illegal. If the quoted statement is at all reliable, I suspect that many of the Indians and Chinese are illegal because they overstayed their visas.

  7. Michael Fiorillo

    To be filed under the category of Self-Licking Ice Cream Cone/Perpetual Motion Machine: 30,000 “humanitarian parole program” beneficiaries per month, all coming from countries that the US government is actively sanctioning (Cuba and Venezuela) or has messed with in the immediate past (Haiti and Nicaragua).

    It’s a trifecta, baby! Liberals get lower wages and yet another opportunity to morally preen, while the Right also gets the lower wages, along with the talking points and political wind at their backs.

    Imperial blowback, the force of which is just beginning to build, amid a collapse of elite competence and forethought…

  8. curlydan

    The border is the Dem-killer issue. The Biden administration and Biden himself started encouraging immigrants to come early in his administration. And they came. Then we give immigrants almost a free pass to get in the country regardless of asylum needs with a paid airline ticket to your destination of choice.

    While Trump was savaged for his treatment of immigrants (and rightly so), the solution for Dems should be clear. Don’t encourage immigration. Actively discourage it, but at least offer a humane solution (i.e. push them out of the country with a shred of dignity or prevent them from entering) which would of course entail a lot more money going to border facilities.

    The Dems think that somehow new immigrants will be future Dem voters, so it’s all OK to have them here. But I think they’re often not going to vote for Dems, and then the Dem immigration policies further alienate current working-class voters who might still vote for them.

    Despite being a Dem mouthpiece, even The New Yorker published a fairly balanced view of the crisis at the border recently. (note: the print version of the article was titled “Borderline Chaos”)

    1. Neutrino

      There is a banality in the US policies about immigration. Manipulate lives, encourage dangerous treks, light up NGO assistance for maps, phones, clothes and resources, then sit back and not watch so many of those lives get ruined.

      Reducing immigrants to one-size-fits-all, as in asylees, does a disservice to those who are as well as those who are economic or other refugees. Some enterprising grad student could sift through sources to find out answers to some basic questions like:

      What percentages are wholly, and also mainly political refugees?
      What percentages are wholly, and also mainly economic refugees?

      And the evergreen follow-the-money themes, with cartels getting their share and then some.

  9. Rip Van Winkle

    Come one, come all. Those John Hughes movie Chicago north suburbs of Winnetka, Wilmette, Highland Park and the campus of New Trier high school await, arrive by planes, trains and automobiles.

  10. SK

    We are bankrupt. $33 trillion in debt and growing. Of our tax receipts, 35% and rising is going towards paying interest on that debt.
    We are funding wars in 10+ nations, most notable is Ukraine where we have sunk billions trying to win an un-winnable war. While our military budget is over $1 trillion when you include DHS and other security state apparatus.
    Our education, housing and healthcare system has become the world’s most expensive and ordinary citizens are struggling. We cannot educate, house or provide healthcare to our citizens.
    With climate change, Insurance companies are no longer insuring customers in CA, FL, TX and other major markets, forcing the tax payers to provide insurance for risky housing and commercial establishments.
    Our legal immigration system is broken where those who play by the rules have to often wait 10+ years just to get a green card.
    So how do we justify taking in millions of people every year, who need assistance with healthcare, housing and assimilation, when we cannot even do that for our citizens?
    Seems bizarre that a bankrupt nation is working to erode it’s own interests and make a complex problem, worse.

    1. JonnyJames

      Because these policies provide cheap labor for the oligarchy – it is a public subsidy. Migrants contribute hugely to GDP as well, it’s good for business. Besides, who want to work in the fields in the Central Valley in the 110F heat all day for shit money? Or work in the slaughterhouses? Lazy, obese, ignorant folks would rather just blame everything on the powerless and let those in power rape and pillage.

  11. bwilli123

    Going to be interesting to see how many Ukrainian refugees Canada & the US take over the next few years. Millions would jump at the chance, I’m sure. And all guaranteed of them to be reliably anti-Russian.
    That’s if the above countries accept any responsibility for promoting the debacle in Europe that created a refugee crisis.

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