NEW YORK (NewsNation) — Any day now, New York City crews will start setting up a large outdoor migrant shelter on state-owned property in Queens.
However, the decision to relocate migrants is not sitting well with those living nearby.
Protestors have been pushing back against the city’s plan to open the newest humanitarian emergency response and relief center in Queens.
After it’s constructed, the shelter will be located adjacent to the Creedmore Psychiatric Center, and up to 1,000 adult male migrants will be brought there.
Demonstrators say they have safety concerns and want to make sure children in the area are not in danger when the center opens in a few weeks.
“You’re talking about a thousand people just roaming the neighborhood, not knowing who they are, not knowing where they came from, or what’s going to happen. It’s just not fair for this neighborhood,” one woman protesting said.
More than 92,000 asylum seekers and migrants have arrived in the city since last year, according to the city. Since then, the city has provided housing and other forms of care for more than 56,000 of them.
Caring for those migrants has cost the city more than a billion dollars so far and city officials estimate the cost will exceed more than $4 billion by next July.
“This is a difficult situation where people are being brought and we’re having to figure out where to place them and it’s costly,” New York City Councilwoman Linda Lee said.
Recently, the city announced it will begin sending letters to migrants already living in sponsored housing that they have 60 days to find a new home.
First in line to receive those letters are adult male migrants.
Last summer, New York City tried opening a similar shelter, but after a few days of construction, the work suddenly stopped.
However, there are currently no plans to shut down this operation in Queens.