New York City Converts Three Public School Gyms into Asylum Seeker Housing
In response to the growing number of asylum seekers, New York City officials have made the decision to repurpose three public school gyms as temporary shelters.
Additionally, Manhattan’s Roosevelt Hotel will be transformed into a processing center for these individuals.
While the move aims to address the pressing issue, it has sparked mixed reactions among local communities.
Eyewitness News reporter Janice Yu provides more details from Coney Island.
Yesterday afternoon, approximately 75 migrants were relocated to the detached gym at PS1 88.
Parents of students attending the school expressed understanding that the migrants will be housed separately and won’t have access to the main school building.
However, some parents admitted feeling uneasy about the situation.
This new arrangement has brought new neighbors to PS1 88 and Coney Island, as the detached gym now serves as a temporary emergency shelter for asylum seekers.
One parent, who herself is Ukrainian and supports refugees, believes the city should organize the process in a way that accommodates the neighborhood.
However, not all parents at PS1 88 share the same sentiment.
Some claim they were not properly notified about the conversion of the gym into a shelter.
In fact, one parent discovered this information during an interview with Eyewitness News.
Concerns have been raised about the duration and nature of this arrangement.
Parents are uncertain about how temporary it will be, and there are mixed opinions on the idea altogether.
PS1 88 is one of three schools being used as emergency shelters, with the other locations being a former school in the Clifton section of Staten Island and PO 17 in Williamsburg.
The city’s shelter system is already overwhelmed, leading some parents to question the decision to utilize schools for this purpose.
The New York City School Safety Coalition shares the sentiment that schools should prioritize the safety of students, rather than accommodating migrants.
The lack of communication and planning regarding this decision has drawn criticism from local leaders.
One school principal expressed disappointment, as they first learned about the plan through a social media post on Facebook, emphasizing that this approach is not appropriate.
Mayor Eric Adams acknowledges that new emergency shelters are being opened daily due to the city’s dwindling space.
He acknowledges the need for a comprehensive solution, but the current situation leaves many unanswered questions and concerns.
As the situation unfolds, the city will continue to grapple with the challenges posed by increasing numbers of asylum seekers, striving to find a balance between addressing the humanitarian crisis and addressing the concerns of local communities.