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US Servicemen Overseas Get Worse Deal Than NYC's Illegal Migrants

© AFP 2023 / Jeon Heon-KyunU.S. soldiers from the 11th Engineer Battalion and 2nd Infantry Combined Division participate in a joint river-crossing exercise between South Korea and the U.S. in Yeoncheon, South Korea Wednesday, March 20, 2024.
U.S. soldiers from the 11th Engineer Battalion and 2nd Infantry Combined Division participate in a joint river-crossing exercise between South Korea and the U.S. in Yeoncheon, South Korea Wednesday, March 20, 2024.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 29.03.2024
New York City – a Democratic stronghold positioning itself as a “sanctuary city” – has been increasingly struggling to house and feed an endless stream of asylum seekers trekking through its intake system. Still, there always seems to be a new project around the corner that will test the city's strained resources even further.
US service members deployed overseas get a worse deal than illegal migrants in New York City, Fox News reported, citing a new pilot project rolled out in the Big Apple.
Caring for migrants may soon blow an even bigger hole in NYC’s budget thanks to the program conceived by Mayor Eric Adams and already lambasted by critics as another giveaway.
Close to 500 of the 64,500 migrants currently in the city’s care will be handed out prepaid debit cards for groceries, baby supplies, and other necessities at local businesses.
A handful of arrivals have already received the cards, which cannot be used at an ATM to take out cash. Up to $350 per week will be given to a family of four under the program, according to US media reports. Cards will be distributed at the Roosevelt Hotel in Manhattan. The program will apply only to migrant families staying at hotels being used as emergency shelters under a 28-day voucher program.
"We can take a look at it after six weeks and see what’s working and what’s not," Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom said at a news conference.

“There is no free money. These are not ATM cards. You can’t take cash out,” Fabien Levy, deputy mayor for communications, noted.

Adding to the controversy is the fact that a deal worth $53 million to cover the program was struck with Mobility Capital Finance without a typical bidding process. Under the deal, the New Jersey-based start-up will get 3% from the initial $50 million in taxpayer funds loaded onto the prepaid cards, the New York Post reported. Overall, the company could pocket some $1.6 million if the pilot program is further expanded to 6,500 families.
The handouts to migrants were compared by Fox News with the current system in the US military. Enlisted soldiers get a monthly $452.56 food allowance, the outlet stated, referencing the Military Times. Yet being deployed overseas reportedly subjects a soldier and their family to a deduction that amounts to a cumulative loss of about $1,860 during a nine-month deployment.
The contentious debit card plan for migrants has encountered a wave of backlash, with vocal critics warning of abuse and fraud concerns.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott slammed the project as sheer “insanity.”
Joseph Borelli, the City Council’s Republican minority leader, stated:
“A lot of New Yorkers are going to take this as something that’s fundamentally unfair. There are plenty of New Yorkers struggling to pay their bills.”
The stark figures of migrant aid were slammed by critics as grossly out of tune with the needs of the US' own citizens.
The pilot program forks out more than twice the amount single veterans get from NY state monthly in services, Fox News said. Illegal arrivals would get more money than low-income and elderly New Yorkers are granted by the state under SNAP benefits, the report added.
According to NY state's website, single households are eligible for up to $291 a month in SNAP benefits.
Migrants sleep outside the Roosevelt Hotel as they wait for placement at the hotel in New York on August 1, 2023.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.01.2024
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US President Joe Biden’s raging migration crisis has been wearing out NYC, which forked out $1.45 billion to assist migrants in the 2023 fiscal year. Over the next three years, around $12 billion may be swallowed up by the cost of housing, feeding, and processing migrants.
Everything from hotels to schools, tents, and even a cruise ship terminal have been used by the Democratic "sanctuary city" to house the tens of thousands of migrants who flocked to the Big Apple last year.
The US southern border crisis has seen three consecutive record-breaking years of illegal crossings since President Joe Biden took office and relaxed immigration policies.
Earlier in March, US Border Patrol chief Jason Owens called the situation at the US southern border with Mexico a threat to the national security of the United States, as over 100,000 undocumented migrants had entered the country over the preceding five months.
In the 2024 fiscal year, which began in October 2023, the US conducted nearly one million migrant apprehensions along the border with Mexico, Owens added.
Migrants seeking asylum wait to be processed by the United States Border Patrol after having crossed the Rio Grande River from Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua State, Mexico, on December 28, 2023 - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.03.2024
Situation on Border With Mexico Threat to US National Security- US Border Patrol Chief
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