Massachusetts asks citizens to take illegal immigrants into their homes

The Democratic governor assures that this is a "temporary measure" in the face of the flood of undocumented immigrants arriving in the state.

Massachusetts Democratic Governor Maura Healey has called on the state's citizens to welcome immigrants into their homes. It would be a "temporary measure" while authorities manage to find accommodation for undocumented migrants who have arrived en masse in the state and who are adding to the state’s increasing homeless population. Interestingly, the wealthiest cities in the state, even the self-proclaimed sanctuary cities, were not included in the list of communities that were asked to make this effort by the governor.

"We are struggling to find physical space for shelters"

According to data provided by state authorities, Massachusetts currently provides housing for 3,853 illegal immigrants from 1,245 families. Right now, drop-in centers are located in 28 mostly middle- and working-class cities, including Norwood, Taunton, Saugus, Revere, West Springfield, Worcester, Methuen, Norton, Chelsea, Woburn and Kingston. Jesse Boodo, a state records access officer, explained:

The uptick in newly arrived families coupled with challenging housing market conditions in the Commonwealth, among other factors, have resulted in a sizable increase in families seeking shelter in the (Emergency Assistance) program. As a consequence of this, the shelter system is strained, and we are struggling to not only find physical shelter space but also shelter providers capable of efficiently and effectively connecting families with the robust services necessary for child and family health and well-being and long-term stability.

Massachusetts recently passed the Labor and Family Mobility Act, which allows illegal immigrants to apply for a driver's license.