Buffalo State University will evict 44 migrants from its dorms this weekend after abruptly ending an agreement with a community health center to house undocumented immigrants on campus, The Buffalo News reported.
The university, part of the State University of New York system, has allowed the migrants to live in dorm rooms since May to help alleviate overcrowding at the Jericho Road Vive Shelter. Buffalo State’s interim president, Bonita Durand, said that the arrangement was supposed to end this month but that the shelter had asked for an extension until February.
“I made the difficult decision to discontinue the revocable permit and want to reassure our university community that as our students return to campus Tuesday, they will find their learning and living environment as they expect,” she said in a statement.
Myron Glick, the founder and CEO of the Jericho Road Community Health Center, which operates the shelter, told The Buffalo News that a university official informed him that the agreement was being canceled because some parents had raised concerns about student safety after two migrants were charged with sex crimes at area hotels.
He argued that the two charged had no connection to the asylum seekers living on campus, which included families with young children.
“We live in a community where there’s prejudice,” Glick said. “And this decision was made, really, in my opinion, as—what’s the right word?—in reaction to that prejudice.”
The migrants were given five days to vacate the campus. Now Jericho Road officials are scrambling to find them alternative housing.