In a startling revelation, the city of Chicago found itself grappling with a massive budget deficit of $538 million where a substantial portion of the blame was placed on the ongoing migrant crisis that has besieged the Windy City. Here’s the full story.
The Sanctuary Cities
This development is just the latest example of “sanctuary” cities across the United States bearing a heavy financial burden due to the influx of migrants.
The financial turmoil in Chicago was revealed when city officials attributed a significant portion of the budget deficit to “the cost of caring for new migrants arriving in the city.”
According to NBC Chicago, approximately $200 million of the deficit can be directly linked to special project expenses, which prominently include the costs associated with migrant care.
The Cost Could Increase
Recent estimates indicate that by the end of the year, the migrant crisis could accumulate a total cost exceeding $255 million.
Chicago, like many other urban centers across the nation, bears the title of a “sanctuary” city.
This designation means that the city restricts local and state law enforcement from cooperating with federal immigration enforcement agencies, signifying a more welcoming approach to people residing in the country without legal status.
Sanctuary Promise to Everyone
Mayor Brandon Johnson’s campaign website emphasized Chicago’s sanctuary status, stating, “As such, we must always resist attempts to pit communities against each other and extend this sanctuary promise to everyone who needs it in our city—both long-time residents and newcomers alike.”
Sending Buses Filled With Migrants
However, it is this sanctuary designation that has made Chicago a target for the transportation of migrants sent by Texas Governor Greg Abbott.
In 2022, Governor Abbott initiated the practice of sending buses filled with migrants to these sanctuary cities, arguing that they were contributing to the migrant crisis experienced in his state.
This transportation initiative initially began in Washington, D.C., and subsequently expanded to include cities like Chicago and New York City.
“Texas has bused over 35,000 migrants to self-declared sanctuary cities,” Abbott wrote on Twitter.
“Over 11,300 to D.C., over 13,300 to NYC, over 6,700 to Chicago, over 2,600 to Philadelphia, over 1,000 to Denver, over 480 to LA,” he added.
New York City Is Facing Financial Challenges Too
New York City, another sanctuary city, has also confronted significant financial challenges as a result of the migrant crisis.
Mayor Eric Adams recently issued a warning, indicating that the influx of over 110,000 migrant arrivals in the past year threatens to “destroy” the city.
A Financial Tsunami
“We are about to experience a financial… tsunami that I don’t think the city has ever experienced,” Adams said.
Every Service Is Going to Be Impacted
“Every service in this city is going to be impacted from child service to our seniors to housing. Everything will be impacted,” he added.
Los Angeles May Be the Next Sanctuary City
In Los Angeles, another sanctuary city, Mayor Karen Bass expressed her apprehensions about the city’s future.
“We live in a city that welcomes immigrants, and so I think we have been able to handle it, but I am Los Angeles that any day, planes could start coming,” Mayor Bass said at an Axios event.
Seeing the Results of Their Actions
Several social media users shared their thoughts on the incident.
One Twitter user wrote, “Crazy how bad policies detrimentally impact everyone. They finally see the results of their actions now.”
They Treat Them Better Than Citizens
Another user added, “Well they are keeping them at 4-star hotels with food and one-year health insurance. They treat them better than citizens.”
A Global Issue
A third user commented, “This is a global issue. It’s even worse in Europe, and it’ll only grow as climate change worsens.”
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