Migrants arrive in Yonkers, long-term plans still up in the air

It wasn't until between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. when about 30 adults and several dozen young children were dropped off by two small charter buses.

News 12 Staff

May 16, 2023, 9:27 AM

Updated 332 days ago

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UPDATE: A news conference with Mayor Mike Spano has ended. Original story is below.
Busloads of migrants from New York City are now in Westchester's largest city after arriving at the Ramada Hotel in Yonkers Monday night.
The buses were rumored to arrive Sunday, but it wasn't until between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. when about 30 adults and several dozen young children were dropped off by two small charter buses.
There was a mix of fear and relief on many of their faces as exhausted kids wrapped in blankets held onto stuffed animals.
Throughout the evening, trucks dropped off prepared meals, supplies and portable cribs for the hotel.
Neither New York City, nor Yonkers has said how long the group of asylum seekers is expected to stay.
The migrants were sent by New York City Mayor Eric Adams to free up room in his city. There has been harsh criticism from Hudson Valley lawmakers on Adams’ handling of the situation and lack of communication.
Gov. Kathy Hochul addressed the situation Monday, saying she's working with the northern suburbs to see what help they can provide.
Meanwhile, County Executive George Latimer says he's reaching out to the federal government to set up a satellite immigration court in Westchester. One of the major issues with immigration in this country is the backlog of court cases determining if migrants who are here should be granted asylum status or sent back to their countries. 
"We're told that they don't have enough judges, fine. The executive authority in Washington should be used to empanel as many judges as is necessary to handle these cases immediately that is a concrete step that will move this process along," says Latimer. "We cannot have people waiting [years] in a motel, in a hotel, in a tent city along the border of Texas."
Latimer says while the migrants wait, the county is ready to provide services such as translation, transportation, and recreational facilities – but promises that would not take away from Westchester residents who need to access those same services.
He also says the federal government needs to work with the state Department of Labor and the county to make sure the migrants have the opportunity to work.
"To track them, to make sure they don't slip out of the system and while they're here, they're not just staying here day after day idly," said Latimer.
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