(VitalNews.org) – Authorities in Chicago have been left scrambling to manage an increasingly large volume of migrants arriving in the Windy City. Plans for up to 25 coaches to bring 1,250 incomers to the city each day have prompted a backlash amongst the city’s residents. With over 2,300 migrants sleeping at police stations, others sleeping at O’Hare airport, and tent encampments popping up across the city, the so-called Sanctuary City is struggling to accommodate them all, even as more arrive each day.
The Mayor’s Deputy Chief of Staff, Cristina Pacione-Zayas, told reporters that the city simply did not have anywhere for the recent Venezuelan migrants to go. Meanwhile, J.B. Pritzker, the Democrat Illinois Governor, has written to President Biden to request further funding for care for the migrants. He also blamed the federal government’s handling of the border crisis for the precarious position in which Chicago has found itself, just two years after he declared his state “the most welcoming” in all of the nation.
Over 17,000 migrants have turned up in Chicago since August 2022, prompting local government to allocate $328 million in aid to their care so far. Some locals are unhappy at the high numbers of incomers as well as the large portion of budget being allocated to them. When local residents gathered together to discuss a lawsuit being filed against the city for its efforts to house migrants in public buildings, one resident called the Democrats “criminals” for their handling of the situation. With so many migrants already desperate for housing and with those numbers increasingly daily, many locals have expressed anger at having their resources diverted. One resident told reporters that it felt as though Chicagoans were being placed at the “bottom of the barrel”.
Questions have also been raised about the city’s ability to keep the migrants safe from the unforgiving Chicago winter as the weather grows colder. One volunteer explained that recent weather had been mild by Chicagoan standards, yet she still had Venezuelan families asking her for extra clothing and complaining about being cold at night. She expressed fear at how they would cope as the temperatures plummet over the upcoming months, fears that have been echoed by others, particularly in the face of the mayor’s plan to house migrants in a giant tent encampment costing the city $29 million. Ray Lopez, a City Council Alderman, questioned how the tents could possibly act as functional shelter in below-freezing temperatures.
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