Citing migrant influx, New York Mayor asks court to suspend longstanding ‘right to shelter’
NEW YORK (AP) — The Mayor of New York asked a judge on Tuesday to let the city suspend its longstanding “right to shelter” obligation, saying officials are no longer able to house every homeless person because of the arrival of tens of thousands of international migrants.
The right to shelter has been in place for more than four decades in New York after a court in 1981 required the city to provide temporary housing for every homeless person who asks for it.
Other big US cities don't have such a rule.
But with the arrival of 70,000 asylum seekers since last spring, many of whom crossed into the United States from Mexico, the city has been challenged to find room for everyone in need of a temporary roof and bed.
“It is in the best interest of everyone, including those seeking to come to the United States, to be upfront that New York City cannot single-handedly provide care to everyone crossing our border,” Mayor Eric Adams said in a statement.
“Being dishonest about this will only result in our system collapsing, and we need our government partners to know the truth and do their share,” said the mayor, a Democrat.
Adams said he was not seeking to permanently end the right to shelter but was seeking “clarity from the court.”
The proposal was condemned by some housing advocates, who said it could result in more people living outdoors.
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