Gov. Hochul: NYS to Commit 150 National Guard to Help Migrants

National Guard personnel to be deployed to support response to asylum seeker crisis at the 369th Regiment Armory in Harlem (Susan Watts/Office of Governor Kathy Hochul)

NEW YORK (New York Daily News/TNS) — New York state will add 150 members of the National Guard to a flock of personnel responding to the asylum-seeker crisis in New York City, Gov. Kathy Hochul said Monday.

The addition will bring the total number of National Guard service members assisting the migrants to 2,050, and will position the state to task 250 troops with case management as New York rushes to help the migrants file work permit applications, according to Hochul’s office.

“That coveted work authorization — that’s their ticket to the American Dream,” Hochul said at a news conference at the 369th Regiment Armory in Harlem.

At Hochul’s urging, the Biden administration said last Wednesday that it would offer Venezuelan migrants in the United States an expedited pathway to work papers called temporary protected status.

Through the end of July, about 40% of the asylum-seekers in the city’s care were Venezuelans, according to city data — though there has been some question about exactly how many migrants in the city would benefit from the federal government’s new rules.

Hochul has cast the White House’s move as an “important step” to help get migrants out of the city’s overwhelmed shelter system and into jobs.

But the success of the effort hinges, in part, on the ability of migrants to submit their work papers.

In addition to the increased National Guard deployment, the state has committed more than $50 million in funding to help with case management processing, Hochul’s office said.

The city, which has opened more than 200 shelters in response to the migrant crisis, had about 60,000 asylum-seekers in its care last week, according to a government tally.

Since spring 2022, the city has welcomed waves of asylum-seekers flowing from America’s southwestern border. The shelter system’s population doubled in a year, and the administration of New York City Mayor Eric Adams projects the surge will cost the city more than $12 billion over the next two budget cycles.

A spokeswoman for Adams, Amaris Cockfield, said the city appreciated the additional National Guard reinforcements.

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