Chicago's O'Hare International Airport is currently a perfect illustration of the serious immigration crisis facing the city.
The airport, one of the busiest in the country, has become a place of refuge for more than 400 illegal immigrants, housed behind black curtains that try to hide them from the eyes of travelers while they are guarded by a security officer.
As reported by the Chicago Tribune, the migrants — many of them children — live at the airport, wash their clothes in the bathroom sink and — most shockingly — sleep on the floor surrounded by their luggage and garbage bags.
VIDEO: This is what’s happening behind the black curtain. Our @NewsNation team obtained video of what migrants describe as “inhumane” conditions at a makeshift shelter inside Chicago’s O’Hare airport. When we asked to go inside the blocked off area, staff overseeing the migrants’… pic.twitter.com/mOk6d6VQtG
— Emily Finn (@EmilyRoseFinn) September 5, 2023
According to Fox, the increase in the number of immigrants living at the airport has been startling. Currently, there are about 430 migrants, compared to 31 at the beginning of August.
Mayor Brandon Johnson's supervision
Chicago is experiencing a serious crime, drug-use and homelessness crisis. Added to this, the last year has seen a migrant influx, with more than 13,500 asylum seekers arriving in the city. Of these, more than 6,500 live in shelters, about 1,500 are sleeping in police stations and more than 400 live at the airport.
The crisis is such that the radical progressive Mayor Brandon Johnson warned that the city cannot receive more immigrants "without significant support and immigration policy changes."
A Chicago Tribune investigation blames the immigration crisis on "decisions made at City Hall under Johnson and former Mayor Lori Lightfoot." According to the report:
Lightfoot failed for months to appoint someone to lead the mission, directed migrants to police stations and entered into costly contracts without a clear plan to transition new arrivals out of shelters. The city’s sluggishness to craft definitive and longer-term plans has continued under Johnson.
Currently, immigrants staying at O'Hare International Airport are waiting to be transferred to one of the more than 15 reception centers in the city, which is overwhelmed by the influx of illegal migration.