Mayor Adams suggests NYC should ‘reassess’ right-to-shelter access amid migrant crisis

File Photo New York City Mayor Eric Adams addresses the press on E. 95th St. and Lexington Ave. in Manhattan, New York where a woman was shot and killed while pushing a stroller Wednesday night, June 29, 2022. Photo Courtesy: New York Daily News

Kathmandu: A massive influx of Latin American migrants in recent months has driven the city’s shelter system so close to collapse that Mayor Adams suggested Wednesday it’s warranted to reassess local homeless policies — including a long-standing law that assures the right to shelter for New York’s neediest.

As reported by the New York Daily News, the mayor floated the extraordinary proposal in a statement that also admitted his administration failed to provide shelter beds for roughly 60 homeless men on Monday night, forcing them to sleep on floors and benches at a Manhattan intake center.

He said that was a result of the shelter system being overburdened by the arrival of more than 11,000 South and Central American migrants since May.

Under the law, the city must provide a bed in a homeless shelter to anyone in need of one, regardless of immigration status or other circumstances.

That has been the case since 1981, when the city entered a consent decree that established the right-to-shelter requirement.

It’s unclear whether Adams would have authority to reassess right-to-shelter protocols, as the law is protected under the state constitution.

Advocacy groups, the Legal Aid Society and the Coalition for the Homeless, said Tuesday that Adams’ administration violated the right-to-shelter law when it didn’t provide beds for the approximately 60 men who were stuck at the intake center at 30th Street and First Avenue.

(News Source: New York Daily News)