Migrants sent to Martha’s Vineyard were voluntarily taken to military base for help, officials say
At a church where they were staying in Martha’s Vineyard, migrants cheered on Friday morning when they learned the Massachusetts government would shelter them at the military base on Cape Cod, and hugged each other and locals before boarding buses .
A volunteer helping the migrants was among those hugging them and was in tears as they left.
“It was a really difficult time for another person – several people – and they shared it with us with such grace, affection and humor. And to be welcomed into their lives and into their hearts was a gift. “, Lisa says Belcastro.
A group of civil rights lawyers working with migrants said their stories were “heartbreaking – and infuriating”. Many migrants went to a hospital in need of treatment when they arrived on the island on Wednesday.
Some of those migrants were sent to Martha’s Vineyard even though they have scheduled immigration hearings that are nowhere near Massachusetts, the group said. Migrants released from government custody often move to other cities in the United States during their immigration process.
“This cowardly political stunt has put our clients at risk,” the Lawyers for Civil Rights group said in a press release Friday. “Some now have immigration hearings as early as Monday thousands of miles away.”
Some of the group’s lawyers accompanied the migrants on buses to the Cape Cod base.
Help awaiting migrants on Cape Cod
Joint Base Cape Cod — already a designated emergency shelter by the state emergency management agency — is being set up to provide “safe, temporary accommodations that meet the needs of families and individuals,” the official said. governor’s office in a statement.
Migrants “will be accommodated in dormitory-like spaces at the JBCC, with separate spaces that can accommodate both individuals and families,” and families will not be separated, the statement said.
They will have access to services including legal services, healthcare, food, hygiene kits and crisis counseling, according to Baker’s office.
Baker, a Republican, rented a temporary shelter the Martha’s Vineyard community has set up for migrants in “a time of urgent need.”
“We are grateful to the vendors, volunteers and local officials who have stepped up to Martha’s Vineyard over the past few days to provide immediate services to these individuals,” Baker said in a news release.
The White House denounces the decision of DeSantis
Despite Wednesday’s unexpected arrivals at Martha’s Vineyard, some islanders have been working quickly to provide some key services.
Hagerty said overall “the outpouring was huge” and reiterated that the island community answered the call for help when the migrants arrived without notice earlier this week.
“Sometimes we’re alone and fearless here, but we understand the journey of the journey and we understand that we’re a community that ultimately wants to help people,” Hagerty said.
CNN’s Bob Crowley, Maria Santana, Amy Simonson, Priscilla Alvarez and Devan Cole contributed to this report.