Police were sent out to the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan Sunday night after a batch of migrants staying at a hotel there reportedly refused to relocate to a Brooklyn shelter.
“This weekend, we began the process of moving single adults[sic] males from the Watson Hotel to Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, as we transition the hotel to meet a large number of asylum-seeking families with children,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams in a statement given to Fox 5 NY.
“The facilities at Brooklyn Cruise Terminal will provide the same services as every other humanitarian relief center in the city,” the statement continued.
Over 50 migrants protested against the planned relocation to the Brooklyn facility, setting up encampments beside the hotel Sunday night, reports the National Review. Some of the migrants reportedly toured the new shelter, only to come back to the hotel after determining they did not approve of the conditions there.
One of Sunday’s protesters compared the facility with an “icebox” holding “hundreds of cots in warehouse-like rooms, few bathrooms, and little heat,” according to a report from W42St.com.
A Twitter user who recorded some of the activities described a “mini-riot,” sharing a brief video. The video shows a group of people standing in front of the Watson Hotel along with a number of cops, emergency vehicles, and a bus.
There was a mini-riot outside the hotel next door to me where @NYCMayor has been housing migrants. The location is being changed from housing single men to housing migrant families, so the men are being moved elsewhere (hence the buses) and are not happy about it. pic.twitter.com/tulWK4D441
— Daniel de la Fé (@dandelafe) January 30, 2023
“The former residents pounded on the [Watson Hotel’s] door and pressed their faces against the glass, yelling ‘Open!’ as security guards and staff watched on from the inside,” said the Villager, which shared numerous photographs of the hectic scene.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams has said that a fifth “Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Center” will be opening at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal on January 21, 2023, noting that it “will provide approximately 1,000 asylum seekers with a place to stay, access support, and get to their final destination.”
“Since this humanitarian crisis began, the city has taken fast and urgent action. . .opening 77 hotels as emergency shelters and four other humanitarian relief centers already, standing up navigation centers to connect asylum seekers with critical resources, enrolling children in public schools through Project Open Arms, and more,” concluded Adams’ statement.
The NYPD took down migrant tents pitched on sidewalks on 57th Street Monday around 11 a.m., reported ABC 7 NY.