Immigrant Rights Advocates Rally to End Adams 30/60-Day Evictions for Adult Asylum Seekers

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New York—Today, the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC), elected officials, allies, asylum seekers and immigrant New Yorkers rallied and held a press conference at City Hall Park. 

On Monday, the City began large-scale implementation of the Right to Shelter settlement agreement, which means all new adult asylum seekers without minor children will be permanently evicted from shelters after 30 days for adults over 24 years and 60 days for adults 18-24 years, barring some exceptions. These harmful restrictions will raise street homelessness, cost the city billions of dollars and open the door to chaos and confusion, all while missing out on the long-term benefits of asylum seekers contributing to New York’s economy. We must preserve the Right to Shelter for all New Yorkers by passing the Stop Shelter Evictions Act (Intro 210) in the City Council.

“The Administration’s haphazard implementation of the Right to Shelter settlement is exacerbating the humanitarian crisis of shelter evictions,” said Council Member Shahana Hanif, District 39. “Whereas people were previously being shifted from shelter placement to shelter placement, people are now being removed from the shelter system entirely. This is unquestionably forcing unhoused people to the streets, uprooting the education of children, and undermining work authorization applications. The need to pass Intro. 210, the Stop Shelter Evictions Act, is more clear than ever. I am grateful to the NYIC and the coalition of leaders who have coalesced behind this bill, and urge my colleagues who have not yet sponsored the bill to do so.”

“The right to shelter does not expire, or disappear in the face of dire need. Current policy means that we are rescinding that right every sixty days, displacing and uprooting people in dire need of stability. To pull people from their communities, children from their schools, cannot be the way to manage the moment. I thank everyone who has fought to prevent upending people’s lives again and again, pushing them back into a process that hasn’t been working for a very long time, for anyone. By putting people into housing, not shuffling them between shelters, we help everyone in need," said New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams. 

“We must uphold the City’s Right to Shelter law which sets New York City apart as a place where our homeless neighbors can still have a roof over their heads,” said New York City Comptroller Brad Lander. “We have already found the 60-day rule for families to be implemented in an arbitrary and haphazard way. We can do better – we must pass the Stop Shelter Evictions Act, make CityFHEPS vouchers more accessible, and provide strong legal services and case management to help the city’s newest arrivals find stability through compassion, not cruelty.” 

"”Limiting the length of shelter stay for migrants creates additional hardships and barriers to stability,” said Council Member Gale A. Brewer, District 6, Chair of the Committee on Oversight and Investigations. “Instead of moving people around, I would love to see them get some support, get their working papers, help them get apartments, and get on their feet. Because I think that’s what’s most helpful to them and to the City.”

“This large-scale implantation is deeply troubling and stands against the very values that we uphold as a city. We must ensure that our policies are efficient, reducing administrative burdens and avoiding unnecessary barriers for those they are designed to assist,” said Council Member Althea Stevens, District 16. “It is our obligation as a city to ensure that policies are updated to reflect equitable solutions and promote dignity for all. Let’s continue to advocate and speak out against this unjust policy that neglects vulnerable individuals in their time of need.” 

"As a Council Member, I am deeply concerned about the large-scale implementation of the Right to Shelter settlement agreement. Evicting new adult asylum seekers from shelters after just 30 days for those over 24 and 60 days for those aged 18-24 will only increase street homelessness, cost the city billions of dollars, and create chaos and confusion. Now more than ever this mayoral administration must lead with compassion and empathy. Home is here and every person should have a right to shelter,” said Council Member Rita Joseph, District 40.

“The first step in building a healthy, stable and successful life is securing housing. But rather than allowing our newest neighbors a chance to get on their feet, Mayor Adams has instead insisted on evicting asylum seekers from their shelter placements. The 30/60-day evictions will harm our communities, and force people to live on the streets – all while costing the City upwards of $2 billion, and missing out on the economic potential of integrating asylum seekers into our workforce and our economy. We must pass the Stop Shelter Evictions Act, expand CityFHEPS eligibility to New Yorkers regardless of immigration status, and implement solutions that invest in our people and future. These are cost-effective policies that will support our communities and  economy, while improving quality of life for all New Yorkers,” said Murad Awawdeh, President and CEO, New York Immigration Coalition.

"These shelter limits not only fail to address current housing needs, but they exacerbate the situation by making it even harder for these communities to access the resources they need to stabilize themselves and obtain long-term housing. We need holistic solutions that center the lived experiences of these new arrivals, not shortsighted policies that disrupt and retraumatize people who have already gone through so much upheaval,” said Sosseh Prom, Housing Justice Director, African Communities Together.

“Newly arrived migrants are receiving 30-day notices to leave their shelters, and then must spend their nights in the streets, trains, or tents while they wait for re-approval. This current system is a puzzle that leaves individuals confused and destabilized. It is a moral responsibility for NYC to uphold the right to shelter so newly arrived migrants can simultaneously stay housed and connect with service providers to access services,” said Hizam Wahib, Assistant Executive Director, Arab-American Family Support Center.

"We believe that housing is a fundamental human right and essential for the well-being of every individual. The decision to implement 30/60-day evictions for asylum seekers is not only inhumane but also counterproductive," said Whitney Hu, Director of Civic Engagement and Research, Churches United for Fair Housing (CUFFH). "This policy will exacerbate homelessness, strain our city’s resources, and deprive New York of the valuable contributions that immigrants bring to our communities. We urge the City Council to pass the Stop Shelter Evictions Act (Intro 210) and to expand CityFHEPS eligibility to include all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status. By investing in inclusive housing solutions, we can create a more equitable, prosperous, and compassionate city for everyone."

"Mayor Adams' decision to implement arbitrary time limits runs counter to what asylum-seekers need to establish themselves in our communities. The lack of a stable address makes it harder for new arrivals to our city to get work authorization, find employment, and keep their children in school. Rather than providing coordinated assistance to help people get on their feet, Mayor Adams and Governor Hochul have abdicated their responsibility and resorted to inhumane policies," said Alison Wilkey, Director of Government Affairs and Strategic Campaigns, Coalition for the Homeless. "No one who needs shelter should ever be relegated to the streets. Instead, we should provide adequate support to help our newest community members and implement proven solutions that will help more people move out of shelter."

“Jews know what it’s like to come to this city seeking safety and freedom, and that’s one of the many reasons why we’re joining with the newest New Yorkers to call on Mayor Adams to end this harmful and nonsensical policy that forces people onto the streets,” said Lilly Sandberg, Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFREJ). “The right to shelter needs to be preserved for everyone, and we support efforts by the City Council and responsible elected officials to stop shelter evictions and provide our new neighbors with the support they need to survive and thrive in this city, as generations have before them.”

"It is counterproductive and cruel to push people out of shelter on an arbitrary schedule just when they are trying to do what the City is asking them to do, which is to take the steps they need to move out. Our new neighbors and longer-term New Yorkers alike would be better served by providing real case management which can help people find jobs, find homes, and rebuild their lives, which is all they want,” said Josh Goldfein, Staff Attorney, The Legal Aid Society.