Vacate order issued for migrant shelter at former school on Staten Island
Asylum seekers are being moved from the former St. John Villa Academy Catholic school on Staten Island on Monday.
The migrants are being moved a day after the FDNY apparently visited the site to inspect for fire violations.
Officials said Sunday’s inspection revealed several safety concerns due to a lack of sprinkler system or fire alarm.
The shelter was originally fitted to house 300 migrants, but after intense public protest, 170 asylum seekers were admitted into the facility.
The former school had been met with controversy and lawsuits for weeks.
Elected leaders on Staten Island called the move a victory.
“The residents surrounding St. John’s Villa did not deserve this disruption to their neighborhood of heavy police presence, nightly protests, and smells of raw sewage,” said Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis. “St. John’s Villa should have already been made a public school as promised and zoned for, not a migrant shelter. We hope this is the beginning of New York City putting the needs and desires of our citizens and our community first.”
Officials said another center being run out of the former Richard H. Hungerford School in Tompkinsville was closed last week due to asbestos.