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Over 3,000 migrants have hit NYC shelter time limit, but about half have asked to stay, report says

New York Mayor Eric Adams announced in July that the city would start giving adult migrants 60 days’ notice to move out of city-run shelters

Recent immigrants to the United States camp with their belongings on the sidewalk in front of the Watson Hotel in New York, Jan. 30, 2023.
Recent immigrants to the United States camp with their belongings on the sidewalk in front of the Watson Hotel in New York, Jan. 30, 2023.Seth Wenig (AP)

About 3,000 asylum-seekers have been told their time was up in New York City shelters, but about half have reapplied to stay, according to a newspaper report.

The United States’ most populous city has struggled to contend with the arrival of over 120,000 asylum-seekers in the past year. About 60,000 are currently in shelters run by the city, which is legally required to provide emergency housing to homeless people. The obligation is unmatched in any other major U.S. city.

Mayor Eric Adams announced in July that New York would start giving adult migrants 60 days’ notice to move out of city shelters. The policy has since been extended to families with children, and tightened to 30 days for adults not accompanied by youngsters.

Migrants, many of whom don’t have legal authorization to work, can reapply for shelter if they can’t find anywhere else to live.

Some 3,025 notices have come due since the initial 60-day policy took effect, the Daily News reported Friday. Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom said Tuesday that roughly “less than 50%” of people applied to remain; the newspaper calculated that out to about 1,500 people.

Williams-Isom cast the statistic as a signal that the policy was prompting people to find their own housing.

A lawyer for the Legal Aid Society didn’t see it that way.

“It would make more sense to step up real case management and help people move out on whatever timeline is appropriate for them, rather than arbitrarily telling people they need to come back” and reapply on a specific day, attorney Josh Goldfein told the Daily News.

So far, the city has handed out at least 13,500 of the 60-day notices, many of which are yet to come due, according to the newspaper.

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