Asylum seekers from New York City are arriving in Sullivan County, and the County has declared a State of Emergency.
Representatives from Mayor Eric Adams’ office in New York City called Sullivan County Manager Joshua Potosek last night to inform him of plans to relocate 80 New York City social services clients to two locations in Liberty and Monticello starting today.
Mayor Adams’ began relocating asylum seekers outside of the City as New York City shelters swelled to record capacities two weeks ago. Other upstate counties declared states of emergency, including nearby Orange county.
Potosek declared a state of emergency early this afternoon. He told Radio Catskill that this won’t lead to asylum seekers being turned around, but the owners of the facilities they’re being placed in will be issued tickets to appear before a judge.
“If you look at what happened in Orange [County], the judge basically said we’re going to allow those asylum seekers that are already here to stay but no new asylum seekers can come until the courts figure out what’s the lawful course of action.”
Sullivan County also issued a statement today opposing the relocation effort and expressing fear that these new arrivals will displace local homeless residents. Potosek said county social services find shelter for about one hundred homeless folks any given day.
“In theory, if they were all displaced, we would have a very, very difficult time finding appropriate places for 100 people to go. So that’s our that’s the reason for the order in our country. Our major concern is not that we don’t want to help people. I mean, this country was founded on freedoms and helping people but it would be at the expense of helping our own residents.”