CHICAGO — More migrants are expected to arrive in Chicago over the weekend.
It comes after tensions were high at a meeting Thursday night in the South Shore neighborhood where the city talked about its plan to convert a former high school into a shelter for migrants seeking asylum.
The city said it needs to identify sites to relieve police stations, which are currently housing about 300 migrants.
It’s a situation police sources said is unimaginable and inhumane.
With more than 8,000 migrants bussed from Texas to Chicago since last August, the city has been forced to find housing.
It’s proposing to house 250 to 500 migrants at the old South Shore High School.
On Friday, Chicago Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson addressed the situation at an event.
“What I will not accept is this dynamic being used to pit our communities against each other,” Johnson said.
He said he’s hesitant to call this a “crisis” because he believes it would suggest “we’ve done something wrong.”
As he prepares to take office in 10 days, he said a small team has already been assembled to focus on the dynamic at hand.
“It’s a dynamic I believe is essential to our democracy, people being able to experience safety and security in a place that has brought people from all over the world,” Johnsons said.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has held his promises to keep bussing migrants to cities, including Chicago, despite pleas to stop as some are struggling to keep up with shelters and resources.
“The political decision of governors along the border to try and stick it to us and use people as a political football is unconscionable and I find it to be quite wicked,” Johnson said.
He said he believes there need to be more resources from the federal government and coordination with local and state officials.
“I’m gonna work very hard to make sure those who are seeking asylum are supported, but we also have to be very clear that those in Chicago have been ignored for a very long time,” Johnson said.
This week, 49th Ward Ald. Maria Hadden, one of Johnson’s closest city council allies, also suggested McCormick Place, Navy Pier or even shuttered big-box stores to be used to house asylum seekers.