On Thursday, the Covid-era rule that allowed the quick expulsion of illegal immigrants in order to protect public health and prevent disease spread, Title 42, expired and a massive wave of border crosses began to flood Texas, prompting Texas Governor Greg Abbott to announce he would be sending thousands to sanctuary cities such as New York City and Chicago.
According to local news, only one bus of illegal immigrants have arrived in Chicago since January, but residents are bracing for more. South Shore resident J. Darnell Jones said, "Politically, having over 500 people in our community would completely wipe out any interest we have. Are you aware that there are immigrant advocates at state houses all over this country who are advocating for non-citizen voting in local elections? What if that happened here? That would change the mindset of what we, as a black community need to thrive here In Chicago. That's a concern of ours."
"This is much bigger than the mayor of Chicago or the Chicago Police Department. This is an effort to destroy our neighborhoods and silence our voices even further," Jones added.
Hundred are expected to arrive at Chicago's Union Station from Texas in the coming weeks and Chicago leaders have said they will house the illegal immigrants at a South Shore High School.
Jones also said, "Why would any leader put our Black communities already riddled with crime, at further risk by placing unvetted, non-taxpayers steps away from our seniors, our children, and our homes we've worked so hard on our own to secure."
Fox News reports that Natasha Dunn, a South Shore community advocate, said, "Our specific frustration lies in the continuous and blatant disregard for the safety and overall quality of life for Black residents, as many of these migrants have been dumped in our neighborhoods without a plan in place to monitor and house them long-term."
Dunn said of Chicago leadership, "They have intentionally created barriers to impede participation in a decision-making process around the public school buildings we pay taxes to maintain."
"We have been redlined, Jim Crowed, pushed out, Enough!" Dunn added, saying the presence of the illegal immigrants affects "the value of our land, safety and peace."
Outgoing Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot declared a state of emergency in preparation of the immigrant influx and said, "The City of Chicago is in the midst of a national humanitarian crisis, and through a unified effort in accordance with its values as a welcoming city, Chicago is doing everything it can to respond to the urgency of this matter. The City has continued to call on federal and state governments to support the new arrival mission with much-needed additional funding and resources for emergency shelter and resettlement, as there are not enough resources currently to meet the need."
South Shore resident Linda Cohran said, "They will be fully taken care of, yet here in our community, we aren’t taken care of."
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