Adams Expands Immigration Application Assistance Centers, Convenes Resettlement Working Group

Adams Expands Immigration Application Assistance Centers, Convenes Resettlement Working Group

As the City continues to manage a national asylum seeker crisis largely on its own, Mayor Eric Adams on Tuesday launched an expansion of the Asylum Application Help Center, scaling up a resource that has helped thousands of asylum seekers complete complex immigration forms as they continue to pursue the American Dream. With funding from the state, the Adams administration will open two satellite sites to assist asylum seekers submit applications for asylum, Temporary Protected Status (TPS), and work authorization — critical steps on the path to securing employment and living independently. As the city continues to pursue its own long-term solutions in the absence of a federal strategy, Adams also convened a Resettlement Working Group to focus on collaborating with national refugee resettlement organizations and municipalities across the country looking to boost declining populations.

The city continues to work diligently to help asylum seekers move from shelter to alternative housing by intensifying casework, re-ticketing migrants, and providing legal support so that asylum seekers can become self-sufficient. Thanks in large part to the city’s efforts helping asylum seekers take the next steps in their journeys, more than half of asylum seekers who have come through the city’s shelter system have found alternative accommodations.

Since opening this summer — bolstered by critical funding from state partners — the City’s help center has supported the filing of over 7,200 asylum applications, approximately 2,900 work authorization applications, and nearly 2,900 TPS applications — more than 13,000 total. The city has additionally helped asylum seekers file over 3,100 work authorization applications during two clinics hosted in partnership with the federal government and city-based nonprofits — totaling more than 16,000 asylum, work authorization, and TPS applications filed thanks to the city’s efforts in recent months.

This month, the city also launched its first satellite sites for immigration application assistance in Harlem and Lower Manhattan, and, in the coming weeks, the city will open additional sites to serve more asylum seekers in the city’s care. Interested asylum seekers can schedule one-on-one appointments at help centers, where trained application assistants provide individualized support to the applicant based on their needs. The city remains on track to identify, screen, and schedule appointments for all eligible Venezuelans who are in the city’s care and qualify for the federal government’s extension and re-designation of TPS by the end of the year.

Comprised of City officials working on the asylum seeker response, the Resettlement Working Group is meeting with immigrant and refugee resettlement organizations and experts to understand best practices from across the country and the world. The working group will also continue to connect with leaders of cities dealing with large influxes of asylum seekers, as well as with cities in need of people to fill vacant jobs. For over a year, the city has asked the federal government to lead a national resettlement and decompression plan. In the absence of action, New York City continues to lead and invest in long-term strategies like resettlement, legal services, and casework to move asylum seekers out of shelter and onto a path to stability.

“We continue to do our part as a city, and we thank the federal government for their support with work authorizations—but more federal support is needed to help asylum seekers transition more quickly to independence,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom.


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