Chicago mayor Brandon Johnson does a U-Turn and will NOT visit the southern border – claiming he needs to address ‘urgency’ of migrant crisis at home after over 18,000 arrive this year
- he Windy City is struggling with over 11,000 migrants in shelters and 4,000 staying in police stations and the O’Hare International Airport
- A delegation from the mayor’s office is scheduled to depart for Texas on Tuesday
- They will report back to mayor Johnson after their visit
Chicago mayor Brandon Johnson has cancelled his planned trip to the US-Mexico border to witness the migrant crisis first-hand, his office has announced.
The Democrat said on Monday he would not attend the trip to the border, but will send deputy mayor of immigration Beatriz Ponce de León to lead and other aides instead.
Brandon said the reversal is due to the need to ‘address the immediate urgency of adding shelter space to house thousands of new arrivals currently sleeping in police stations, airports or outside.’
The Windy City is struggling with over 11,000 migrants in shelters and 4,000 staying in police stations and the O’Hare International Airport after more than 18,000 have arrived in the city in one year.
The delegation is scheduled to depart for Texas on Tuesday and visit the cities of El Paso, San Antonio, McAllen and Brownsville.
Chicago mayor Brandon Johnson has cancelled his planned trip to the US-Mexico border to witness the migrant crisis first-hand
The Windy City is struggling with over 11,000 migrants in shelters and 4,000 staying in police stations and the O’Hare International Airport (pictured)
Most of the migrants who have arrived in Chicago during the last year have come from Texas, largely under the direction of Republican Governor Greg Abbott
‘The Mayor, along with senior aides and key operations personnel, will stay in Chicago to address the immediate urgency of adding shelter space to house thousands of new arrivals sleeping in police stations, airports or outside,’ Johnson’s office said in a the statement.
Johnson had previously said he would go to the border with his family ‘as soon as possible’ as he tried to better coordinate the arrival of migrant buses in Chicago with Texas officials.
‘A point of emphasis will be establishing better lines of communication and collecting migrant data to expedite work authorization processing and the transition to self-sufficiency,” the mayor’s statement added.
‘The Chicago delegation will also be sharing pertinent information about extreme housing and weather conditions currently facing asylum seekers in Chicago, and the immense challenges awaiting those without verified sponsors.’
The delegation will reportedly report back to Johnson on its findings and plan a follow-up trip.
It comes after DailyMail.com revealed Chicago is giving $9,000 in rental assistance to migrants in need of temporary housing – after it paid a medical firm a staggering $7.2million for staffing shelters for just one week.
To free much-needed room in shelters, the state of Illinois is helping cover costs for temporary housing for migrants, including $9,000 in rental assistance over a six-month period, Chicago’s deputy chief of staff Cristina Pacione-Zayas told Fox32. The funds include assistance with moving costs and a starter kit to furnish apartments.
Throughout the month of August, upwards of 232,000 migrants crossed the US-Mexico border – and up to two million are estimated to have crossed this year
Stunning images have shown droves of migrants traversing difficult terrain and wading through the Rio Grande river on their way over the southern border
The city has allocated $4 million to help migrants find temporary housing, and the state has contributed another $38 million. It’s unclear how many migrants are currently benefiting from the program.
Meanwhile a new report has revealed that Kansas-based company Favorite Healthcare Staffing billed the city more than $7.2 million to staff migrant shelters for just four weeks, as reported by NBC 5.
Chicago has already spent $60 million on staffing shelters, including $1.4 million at former Wadsworth School, $1.6 million at the Inn of Chicago and $1.2 million at the Social Club shelter.
And the situation is not easing up, as buses from Texas continue arriving. Just last week, 41 more buses of asylum seekers who crossed the US-Mexico border arrived.
Most of the migrants who have arrived in Chicago during the last year have come from Texas, largely under the direction of Republican Governor Greg Abbott.