BROOKLYN, N.Y. (PIX11) – New York City has begun housing asylum seekers in the recreation center at Brooklyn’s McCarren Park, as part of an effort to find new alternatives for the city’s overcrowded shelter system.
Nearly 100,000 migrants and asylum seekers have come to New York City since last spring, according to city officials. The city is still caring for more than 56,000 of them, with hundreds more arriving each day, officials said.
The city plans to utilize a wing of the recreation center at McCarren Park to house adult asylum seekers, according to a spokesperson for Mayor Eric Adams.
“New York City has been left alone to deal with a national crisis that demands difficult and swift decision-making,” the Adams spokesperson said. “We are constantly searching for new places to give asylum seekers a place to rest their heads.”
Some migrants are now living on the streets, including underneath the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, due to overcrowding and safety concerns at the city’s shelter system.
New York leaders have continued to put pressure on the federal government to do more to help with the migrant crisis.
Queens Assemblywoman Jenifer Rajkumar crafted a letter, cosigned by 54 lawmakers, most of them Democrats, criticizing President Joe Biden’s handling of the crisis.
“This is one of the most significant humanitarian crises our city has ever faced, and we cannot face it alone,” Rajkumar said earlier this week. “Our city needs help from the White House.”
PIX11 News reporters Henry Rosoff and Jay Dow contributed to this report.