New York City plans to distribute fliers at the southern border warning migrants there is “no guarantee” they will receive help if they come there.
Mayor Eric Adams announced the plan on Wednesday, arguing the city could not handle any more migrants as it has taken in 90,000 since April last year.
“We have no more room,” said the leader of America’s biggest city.
Republican-led states have been transporting migrants to Democratic-run areas in protest at border policies.
A copy of the flier tells migrants: “Please consider another city as you make your decision about where to settle in the US.”
It warns – in English and in Spanish – that the cost of food, transportation and other necessities in New York are expensive and says the city cannot guarantee housing and other social services for new arrivals.
The city of 8.3 million people said in a statement that it was “at capacity”.
As a part of the plan, Mr Adams, a Democrat, also announced that single adult migrants will only be able to stay in the city’s shelters for 60 days and will need to reapply for a space after that.
Mr Adams told a news conference the city would try to help migrants find housing with relatives and friends.
The mayor blamed the federal and state government for not providing enough aid for the city to offer housing and other social services for new arrivals.
“We cannot continue to absorb tens of thousands of newcomers on our own without the help of the state and federal government,” he said.
A record 105,800 people are living in New York’s shelters at the moment, including over 54,000 asylum seekers, says the city.
Critics of Mr Adams’ new plan argue it violates the city’s right-to-shelter rules, which guarantee temporary housing for those in need. Mr Adams has attempted to weaken those rules amid the influx of migrants.
In a statement on Twitter, the American Civil Liberties Union of New York called the mayor’s new plan “cruel” and “unlawful”.
It “flies in the face of New Yorkers’ values of compassion and care”, the organisation said.
In recent months, Mr Adams has taken a number of steps to try to limit new migrant arrivals.
In May, he announced he would send willing migrants to nearby counties outside of the city, sparking a backlash from some local New York officials.
The Republican-led states transporting migrants by bus to Democratic-run jurisdictions have focused on self-proclaimed “sanctuary” cities that limit their co-operation with federal immigration authorities.
They have also said the measure is designed to increase pressure on President Joe Biden, a Democrat, to do more to reduce the number of migrants crossing the southern US border.
Source : BBC