Illegal Immigrants No Longer Sleeping Overnight at Boston’s Logan Airport, Official Says

Illegal Immigrants No Longer Sleeping Overnight at Boston’s Logan Airport, Official Says
Illegal immigrants use Terminal E at Boston Logan International Airport as a shelter in Boston on Jan. 30, 2024. (Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images)

Illegal immigrant families can no longer sleep overnight at Boston’s Logan Airport as of the night of July 9, according to a state government official.

Last month, Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey ordered the families to be out of Logan’s Terminal E by July 9. They have been sleeping in the airport because shelters in the state reached full capacity, officials said, with hundreds of families staying there for months.

A Healey administration official told The Epoch Times that July 9 marks “the first day” that the illegal immigrant families won’t be allowed to return to Logan Airport at night.

The government was still working with the families as of July 9 to discuss their options, such as transportation to another place or “placement into a safety-net site if they are eligible,” the official said.

The official didn’t indicate how many individuals remained at the airport as of the evening of July 9. Local media reported that only a small number of families remained in the terminal on July 9.

“The administration has worked diligently in recent months to increase the number of families leaving shelter into more stable housing. With this progress, the recent opening of a new safety-net site in Norfolk and the new nine-month length of stay policy, we are now in a position to end the practice of families staying overnight in the airport,” Massachusetts Emergency Assistance Director Scott Rice said in a statement.

“If families are traveling to Massachusetts, they need to be prepared with a plan for housing that does not include Logan Airport or our Emergency Assistance shelters,” the statement reads.

The Healy administration said in a statement that it recently increased efforts to provide families who are homeless with housing, work applications, English classes, job placements, and other options.

“As a result of these efforts, the number of families leaving shelter has steadily increased over the past few months, with more than 300 families leaving in May—the highest number in years,” the statement reads.

Top Massachusetts officials, including Mr. Rice, traveled to the U.S.–Mexico border in Texas “as record numbers of immigrant families continue to arrive in Boston and the state’s family shelter system is at capacity,” according to a separate announcement from the governor’s office.

The trip was meant to serve as a warning of sorts to individuals looking to travel to Massachusetts after illegally crossing the U.S.–Mexico border, Mr. Rice said, noting that it’s “to make sure they have accurate information about the lack of shelter space in Massachusetts.”

“It is essential that we get the word out that our shelters are full so that families can plan accordingly to make sure they have a safe place to go,” he said.

The move comes just three weeks after President Joe Biden issued executive orders suspending the processing of most asylum claims at the U.S.–Mexico border under certain conditions, triggering a lawsuit from the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups just days later.

“These actions will be in effect when high levels of encounters at the Southern Border exceed our ability to deliver timely consequences, as is the case today,” the White House said of the order. “They will make it easier for immigration officers to remove those without a lawful basis to remain and reduce the burden on our Border Patrol agents.”

The border has been a major policy issue of concern for voters throughout the presidential campaign so far. According to Gallup’s monthly data, Americans identified immigration as the top issue facing the country in February, March, and April, surpassing even the share who cited the economy and persistently higher prices.

Immigration came up less frequently as a top issue in Gallup’s May poll. As of June, the issue was still tied with the government and the economy as what voters see as the nation’s most important problem.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

From The Epoch Times