Coalition for the Homeless Statement on Recent NIMBYism

“The critically necessary relocation of homeless individuals from crowded congregate shelters to hotels as a life-saving measure during the COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a wave of disgraceful and inhumane NIMBYism from certain members of our community. The hateful rhetoric making headlines ignores the fact that these hotels provide the private refuge that medical experts say is a vital tool for preventing another COVID-19 resurgence in our city – especially among those with the highest mortality rates. This is quite simply a life-or-death situation for our neighbors experiencing homelessness, and the Mayor must not bow to misguided pressure from those who find these emergency measures inconvenient. The City must instead heed the science and refrain from relocating people back to congregate shelters until it is safe to do so. We must also use this pivotal moment to call for more investments in permanent affordable housing in order to reduce the need for shelters in the first place. New Yorkers experiencing homelessness deserve, just as much as anyone else, to survive this devastating pandemic. We need to move forward with more compassion and sensibility if we’re going to get through this,” said Giselle Routhier, Policy Director at Coalition for the Homeless