New York Mayor Raises Concerns Over Limited Benefits of Temporary Protected Status for Asylum Seekers
New York City Mayor Eric Adams expressed his concerns regarding the limited benefits of the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) extension announced by the Biden administration. The extension aims to expedite work authorizations for Venezuelan migrants but has left the majority of asylum seekers in the city’s care ineligible.
At a press conference on Thursday, Mayor Adams stated, “We have approximately 60,000 asylum seekers in our care, three-quarters of them are not eligible for the announcement that was made.” He further explained that only about 15,000 individuals meet the criteria to benefit from the TPS extension.
However, these numbers pale in comparison to the more than 116,000 asylum seekers who have been processed through New York City’s shelter system since last spring, with approximately 60,000 still under the city’s care. Although this figure includes migrants from various countries, Governor Kathy Hochul estimated that 41% of these asylum seekers are of Venezuelan nationality.
The Department of Homeland Security’s announcement extended TPS for Venezuelans residing in the US on or before July 31, 2023, allowing them to apply for work authorizations. However, the timing condition poses a problem for many Venezuelan migrants who arrived in the city during the recent wave, which saw around 300 arrivals per day, according to city statistics. These individuals may not be eligible for TPS nor able to request work permits through legal means.
Mayor Adams acknowledged this issue, stating, “That leaves us with a total of 9,500 of the 60,000 who are eligible to apply for work authorization.” He also expressed his intention to work with the White House to find alternative solutions.
Adams revealed that he had spoken with the White House on Wednesday night, following the TPS announcement. He commended President Biden’s efforts on various issues but emphasized the significant impact the current asylum situation has on New York City. The mayor called the recent decision a starting point and emphasized the need for further action.
The concerns raised by Mayor Adams shed light on the challenges faced by asylum seekers in New York City and the limited benefits they will receive from the TPS extension. As the city continues to grapple with a significant number of asylum seekers, collaboration between local and federal authorities is crucial to find sustainable solutions for those in need.