Bart Jones, Newsday (New York City), June 30
In an escalating crackdown on illegally overcrowded houses in Farmingville, more than two dozen day laborers have been evicted from two houses since Brookhaven town and Suffolk County closed a home there last week, authorities and immigrant advocates said yesterday.
And in a ripple effect from the crackdown, other landlords have begun telling tenants to leave their rented houses, the advocates said.
After the June 20 raid on 33 Woodmont Place that left at least 28 Mexican immigrants homeless and led to the arrest of the owner, the town late last week obtained temporary restraining orders forcing illegal tenants out of two other houses in Farmingville, Brookhaven Town spokeswoman Inez Birbiglia said.
The evictions are the result of a stepped-up offensive by Brookhaven Town and Suffolk County officials targeting 117 overcrowded houses in Farmingville and 300 elsewhere in the town. Though the campaign has not yet targeted their houses, it has left immigrants such as Juan Cruz, 24, and Esteban Lopez, 26, worried. “We’re scared,” Cruz said in Spanish as he waited for work yesterday. “Where are we going to live?”