New York City spent approximately $50,000 in a one-year period to resettle dozens of migrants in different parts of the U.S. — including Florida and Texas — as well as other countries, including South American nations and even China.
The city spent $50,000 between April 2022 and April 2023 to rehouse 114 migrant households to states across the country, according to data obtained by Politico. The top three states were Florida (28 households), Texas (14) and North Carolina (6). The outlet also reported that five households were sent to other countries, including Peru, China, Ecuador and Venezuela.
The existence of transportation programs out of the city for migrants are neither new nor hidden. The city in September announced the formation of Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Centers, which provide services to migrants including ‘settlement options’ via family connections both in and outside of the Big Apple.
‘We found that people had other destinations, but they were being compelled only to come to New York City, and we are assisting in interviewing those who seek to go somewhere else,’ Adams said in February. ‘Some want to go to Canada, some want to go to warmer states, and we are there for them as they continue to move on with their pursuit of this dream.’
But the data from Politico comes after Adams and other Democratic leaders across the U.S. have hammered the governors of Florida and Texas for their resettlement programs that transport migrants to so-called ‘sanctuary’ jurisdictions like New York City, Washington D.C., and California.
Critics have denounced the Republican governors for what they say is the weaponization of immigrants as part of a political stunt and have accused them of misleading migrants to get them on the transports against their will. Governors have rejected those claims and said that the transports are voluntary.
In a statement to Politico, a spokesman for Texas Gov. Abbott noted recent comments by Adams in which he called busing migrants ‘morally bankrupt.’
‘Where is all the outrage and condemnation from the White House and Democrats for one of their own sending migrants out of town, out of state, and even out of the country?’ Abbott spokesperson Andrew Mahaleris said.
But NYC officials rejected the comparison, saying that the tickets being bought are not part of a chartered service, unlike what Texas does, and the city busses migrants to other parts of New York State. Officials have also cited cases where people were sent to NYC who didn’t want to be there.
‘The Texas governor chartered buses to New York City and placed asylum seekers, many of whom did NOT want to come here, on multi-day journeys without food, limited water, few bathroom breaks, and no medical attention,’ a City Hall spokesperson told Fox News Digital.
‘Our teams meeting buses cared for people who were dehydrated, malnourished, and, in many cases, saying they did not want to come to New York City. We heard reports of asylum seekers tagged with barcodes, prevented from getting off the bus along the journey, and being forced to sign papers they did not fully understand. In contrast, New York City has, as we have discussed very publicly for months, worked to connect individuals with friends, family, and networks whether in New York City or outside of it. We are not coercing people to leave, we are not suggesting or recommending locations, and we are not presenting any kind of false choice. We are helping people who want to reconnect with loved ones or communities do so.’
But the controversy taps into the ongoing debate about migrant transportation and the ethics involved in doing so. Border states like Texas have argued that they need to protect their communities from a historic influx of migrants and believe it justified to send them to jurisdictions that call for policies that they say have encouraged the crisis.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently defended his transports to California after Gov. Gavin Newsom and other California officials accused his state of ‘kidnapping’ migrants.
‘These sanctuary jurisdictions are part of the reason we have this problem because they have endorsed and agitated for these types of open-border policies,’ DeSantis said. ‘They have bragged that they are sanctuary jurisdictions.’
‘I don’t think we should have any of this. But if there’s a policy to have an open border then I think the sanctuary jurisdictions should be the ones that have to bear that,’ he said. ‘We’re not a sanctuary in Florida.’
Numbers released by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) last week showed that there were over 204,000 migrant encounters at the southern border in May alone, bringing the total encounters for the fiscal year to over 1.6 million.