The Associated Press (AP) reported that New York City officials announced an expanded overnight curfew at 20 migrant shelters throughout the city on Sunday, following an increase in reports of criminal misconduct.
On Thursday, members of a “citizen-militia” mistakenly identified a local resident as a migrant, threw him to the ground, and beat him. “We gave him a little pain compliance,” the group’s leader, Curtis Sliwa, said, according to the New York Times. “His mother back in Venezuela felt the vibrations.”
That act of violence, televised live on Fox News, came following reports that seven people were indicted “in connection with assault on NYPD officers outside migrant shelter” earlier in January.
The 11 PM to 6 AM curfew will impact some 3,600 migrants seeking shelter during the asylum and migration process, a spokesperson for Mayor Eric Adams told AP in an emailed statement on Sunday.
Sunday’s announcement follows similar restrictions placed on four other migrant shelters last week.
While the move comes on the heels of increased reports of criminal misconduct in areas surrounding the shelters, Adams was quick to make clear he views the incidents as isolated flare-ups that do not represent, on the whole, the community of migrants seeking asylum or refugee status.
“… [W]e have an overwhelming number, the 175,000 or so migrant and asylum seekers, who are trying to pursue the American dream. And we should not use a numerical minority who are showing criminal behavior and state that that is what the immigrants and asylum seekers are doing because asylum seekers there are here legally. They were paroled into the country,” Adams said in an interview on Sunday with radio station PIX 11 before the expanded curfew was announced.
A recent rise of anti-immigrant sentiment led New York state Comptroller Brad Lander to release a fact sheet in January of 2024, highlighting common misconceptions that were driving a series of hostile interactions between protestors and migrants taking shelter within the city’s five boroughs.
In response to an overwhelming influx of migrants, often sent to northern states by hostile border state governors, New York Governor Kathy Hochul and Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey urged federal officials to reform current work-authorization rules for asylum seekers and refugees.
By doing so, Healey and Hochu assert that migrants would be able to further contribute to the US tax base, and the burden on state shelter systems would be reduced. Currently, migrants in the US contribute an estimated $30 billion per year to the federal tax system (without the ability to receive federal benefits to the right to vote).