Massachusetts Governor Expresses Inability to Assure Shelter for Migrant Families

On Monday, Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey issued a warning, stating that due to a surge in illegal migrants, the state’s shelter system has reached full capacity, making it impossible to ensure shelter for migrant families. During a press conference at the state House, Healey, a Democrat, emphasized that they are confronting a new phase of this challenge and can no longer guarantee shelter placement for incoming families.

Massachusetts’ shelter system currently accommodates approximately 23,000 individuals, including nearly 7,000 families. The system has a capacity for 24,000 individuals or 7,500 families, and it is anticipated to reach full capacity by the end of October.

As the colder months approach, priority will be given to families with heightened needs, particularly those facing health and safety risks, according to Governor Healey’s announcement.

“I want to assure you that we will continue to engage, assess and serve every family who appeals for help as best we can,” the governor said.

Massachusetts remains committed to its legal obligation to provide shelter to migrant and homeless families under the “right to shelter” mandate, and Governor Healey affirmed that this commitment will not be terminated.

Back in August, Governor Healey declared a state of emergency in response to the migrant situation and mobilized 250 state National Guard members to support the shelters and hotels accommodating migrants.

Subsequently, Healey has been advocating for the Biden administration to offer federal assistance to Massachusetts to address the crisis and expedite the approval process for work visas for migrants.

“This again affirms my call to the Biden administration,” the governor said Monday. “I think they know and understand clearly what it is that we are seeking and those discussions are continuing. I’m hopeful that they will result in action soon for our state. But in the meantime we can’t wait.”