Expo New Mexico to temporarily house asylum-seeking families

Expo New Mexico is getting ready to house, feed and give medical attention to asylum seekers. Albuquerque city officials expect to start seeing migrants arriving by the end of the week. 

Tuesday, KRQE News 13 got a chance to go into the living quarters where asylum seekers will be staying. They say it will be a streamlined process, where the buses will drop them off right outside the dorms they’ll be staying in.

“In accordance with our mission, this is what we do. When there’s a humanitarian crisis, or any crisis of that nature, we’re here to open our grounds,” Dan Mourning, General Manager of Expo New Mexico, said. 

Albuquerque has recently seen an influx of migrants due to border cities unable to handle all of the people coming through the country. Tuesday, Dan Mourning, the GM of Expo New Mexico, took KRQE News 13 through the living areas where the asylum seekers coming through Albuquerque will be staying. 

Normally, these beds are used for the 4-H kids. Each bed has a chest of draws and there are showers and bathrooms attached that they can use as well. In addition, they will have access to a full kitchen, check-in area, and a drop off location for donations. 

The city says this was an opportunity to save money for the organizations that help the asylum seekers. 

Right now, many of these groups host asylum seekers at hotels and places of worship, and so as great as that is for right now, it’s not something that is sustainable. It’s very costly for these groups,” Mariella Ruyz-Angel, Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs, said.

The city says since mid-February close to 2,000 migrants have come through Albuquerque. Expo New Mexico says they can house up to 240 people. 

This is not costing taxpayers any money because it is being covered by donations and volunteers.

The city of Las Cruces has housed more than 2,000 asylum seekers over the last few weeks. As for Santa Fe, city officials have decided not to take them in. They say it makes more sense for transportation hubs like Albuquerque and Las Cruces to house asylum seekers.

People in Albuquerque and elsewhere wishing to assist can contact Catholic Charities or visit the
city’s Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs to learn more.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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