Posted on September 29, 2023

Brooklyn Dem Leader Claims White Neighbors Not Helping to Confront Migrant Crisis

Carl Campanile, New York Post, September 26, 2023

Brooklyn’s Democratic Party leader is dragging race and class into the city’s migrant crisis, claiming the wealthier whiter neighborhoods in her borough are not shouldering their fair share of shelters.

“With dwindling resources being rapidly depleted, this situation is unsustainable without our entire borough banding together and helping together; as we have to overcome the Pandemic and other crises,” reads a statement released by local Dem chief Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn and the Brooklyn Democratic Party organization.

“Let’s spread the love the Brooklyn way,” Bichotte Hermelyn said in the missive, which was obtained by The Post.

“We acknowledge the vital feedback from Brooklynites recommending having migrant shelters in communities from Fort Hamilton Army Base, Bay Ridge, Brooklyn Heights, Marine Park, and Manhattan Beach,” the release said.

“We are executing on recommending these neighborhoods in Brooklyn, as well as similarly expanding to underutilized areas across NYC, the entire State of New York, and other municipalities across the US.”

The statement from Bichotte, also a state assemblywoman representing Ditmas Park, Flatbush, East Flatbush and Midwood, is sure to raise eyebrows in political circles because she is considered a close ally of New York City Mayor Eric Adams {snip}


Two Council members — Democrat Justin Brannan and Republican Ari Kagan — are running against each other to represent Bay Ridge in a newly reconconfigured district in November.


Kagan defended his opposition to placing migrant shelters in the southern Brooklyn neighborhoods and accused Bichotte Hermelyn of engaging in divisive racial politics.

“It’s terrible race-baiting politics. There’s a backlash against shelters all over the city,” Kagan said.


Kagan said the “root causes” of the unrenting influx of migrants flooding the city need to be addressed — and should have been long ago.

“I call on the federal government to secure the border. We have to get back to a legalized and orderly immigration system,” the Democrat-turned-Republican councilman said.

He also said the city should end its sanctuary and Right to Shelter policies that aid asylum seekers and also migrants who cross the border illegally.


A City Hall insider said elected officials — including the mayor and council members — are hearing complaints from their base of black and Hispanic and working-class white voters over shelter distribution.

“They are feeling the pressure from black and brown constituents,” the source said of the pols.

For example, two Brooklyn lawmakers — state Sen. Roxanne Persaud and state Assemblyman Jaime Michael Williams, both of whom are black, are fighting the plan to place migrants at an encampment in Floyd Bennett Field in the borough.