Protests Against Migrant Resettlement Growing In Chicago

An increasing number of residents of Chicago are voicing their opposition to city plans to house migrants. The Windy City is currently struggling to handle the influx of thousands of illegal immigrants since the start of the Biden administration in 2021.

Chicago recently opened a shelter for migrants in the Woodlawn neighborhood, sparking protests from the public. 

At a meeting, one woman told members of the Chicago Police Department that they should “go out there” to see the current situation. 

Another resident stated that the illegal immigrants “disrespect us, they rob us, they harass us.” 

The situation became so tense that one resident warned that locals could turn to “street justice.” 

“Nobody is going to be able to stop us from what we’re going to do to them,” said one protester.

Recently, Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly (D) wrote a letter to Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson (D) regarding the situation at a hotel currently used by the city to house migrants. Reilly wrote that the immigrants were engaged in a number of illegal activities, including dealing drugs and prostitution. 

He also said that the migrants were “leaving human waste on the sidewalks near the hotel.”

Johnson also received criticism for his decision to house over 300 migrants at Wilbur Wright College and about another 400 at Richard J. College. Furthermore, the Chicago Police Department is housing dozens of migrants within their stations. 

One protester said during a May meeting that the Wilbur Wright College shelter decision was “dumped on us. We pay taxes in this district and should have been told what’s going on and why.”

Another protester stated that the migrants could “just roam the neighborhood” and described the plan as an “absolute slap in the face to those who came here legally.” The comment was met with applause. 

Residents of the South Side neighborhood filed a lawsuit in an effort to block the city from using a former school as a migrant shelter.

During Johnson’s inaugural address, he said that the city would care for the “unhoused” and “those who are seeking refuge here,” including those “seeking asylum.”