You are reading

St. Agnes respite center for migrants in College Point shutters early

Oct. 16, 2023 By Iryna Shkurhan

A respite center for migrants at the site of the former St. Agnes Academic High School in College Point closed permanently this past weekend.

Council Member Vickie Paladino announced the closure of the center on Friday, Oct. 13, the same day that the transfer of migrants to permanent shelters across the city began. She added that the building, which accommodated approximately 300 asylum seekers in family units, became fully vacated on Oct. 15.

“As promised, the migrant shelter at St. Agnes is permanently closing two weeks early. I was on the scene all day assisting the 109th Precinct and shelter staff with organizing the migrants onto buses and out of the district,” said Paladino, who added that she “personally secured” bus transportation for the migrants.

In a video shared by Paladino on X, dozens of migrants are seen with all their personal belongings in hand outside of St. Agnes on 124th Street waiting to board an MTA bus on standby. Paladino appeared to be coordinating the transfer by calling out names to hand out ID badges to the migrants.

The site was initially scheduled to close on Oct. 31, which marked the end of its three month long contract. She attributed the early closure to conversations with the Mayor’s office and other stakeholders who were receptive to her advocacy. Community members have also protested the center since it opened in July, citing safety and security concerns.

“I have been fighting this from day one and I could not be more thrilled to secure the permanent closure of the St. Agnes respite center for my constituents of College Point,” said Paladino. “For too long, College Point has been neglected but I’m on the job every single day to reverse that trend.”

The building was turned over to the School Construction Authority, which will resume renovations to reopen it as a new public high school in 2026.

Filed under: Uncategorized

Recent News

Five Queens startups win $20,000 each in 2024 Tech + Innovation Challenge

May. 19, 2024 By Czarinna Andres

A diverse range of businesses, including a yoga studio, an olive oil distributor, a female health care provider, a sustainable mushroom farmer, and an AI-powered physical therapy service, have been named winners of the 2024 Queens Tech + Innovation Challenge (QTIC). Each winner will receive a $20,000 grant to support their business operations.

QBP Richards, advocates rally to demand Mayor Adams restore funding to City’s libraries

May. 17, 2024 By Gabriele Holtermann

A rally was held at the Queens Public Library at Forest Hills on May 16, during which Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Queens Public Library President and CEO Dennis Walcott, union reps and library advocates called on Mayor Eric Adams to reverse the proposed $58.3 million budget cuts to the New York Public Library (NYPL), the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), and the Queens Public Library (QBL) for Fiscal Year 2025, which begins on July 1, 2024.

Queens elected officials secure $70 million from New York State Budget for school safety equipment in religious and independent schools

May. 17, 2024 By Anthony Medina

Religious and independent schools throughout the city will soon receive additional funding for school safety equipment, thanks to Assemblymember Andrew Hevesi and State Senator Michael Gianaris, who, after extensive advocacy efforts, successfully secured $70 million from the New York State Budget for 2024-25 for Non-Public School Safety Equipment (NPSE) grants.