Brooklyn soup kitchen overwhelmed by ‘heartbreaking’ influx of migrants

An influx of migrants has wreaked havoc on a Brooklyn soup kitchen that serves as a lifeline for the needy in Gowanus and Park Slope, The Post has learned.

The privately run Community Help in Park Slope has been stressed to the limit since some 300 asylum seekers moved to a nearby hotel — leaving staff scrambling to provide food and clothes and local clients worried they might not be able to get meals.

“It’s really heartbreaking to see that these migrants are coming on the line and we’re seeing the kids with no shoes, no jackets on,” said Pauline Auguste, director of food services at the group, known as CHiPS.

“It’s heart-wrenching — we try to accommodate them as much as we can with hats, gloves, and socks.”

The kitchen — which also provides clothing — has been doing its best to deal with the influx of clients but is hoping the city can do more to assist.

“We need help,” Auguste said when asked if he had any words for city officials. “Come and visit the soup kitchen. Come and talk to the people on the line so you can see the strain that it’s putting on small nonprofits like ours.”


Throngs of people lined up outside the kitchen
Hundreds of asylum seekers had overwhelmed the CHiPS soup kitchen in Gowanus, Brooklyn.
Paul Martinka for NY Post

The line wraps around the block
The line of hungry migrants and New Yorkers in need stretched around the block Tuesday afternoon.
Paul Martinka for NY Post

A picture of the Holiday Inn Express
Some 300 migrants were being housed around the corner at a 625 Union Street Holiday Inn Express which had been converted into an emergency migrant shelter by the city.
Paul Martinka for NY Post

The non-profit was spending up to $800 more every week on eggs, bread, coffee and sugar for breakfast, and was relying on local donations

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Home Office says safety of city’s asylum-seekers is priority after far-right protest

Protest - Far-right activists outside the Holiday Inn Express, in Colchester <i>(Image: Newsquest)</i>

Protest – Far-right activists outside the Holiday Inn Express, in Colchester (Image: Newsquest)

HOME Office bosses have stressed the safety of asylum seekers is “of the utmost importance”, after far-right activists staged a protest outside a Colchester hotel.

Four members of the so-called Patriotic Alternative movement descended on the Holiday Inn Express, in Birchwood Road, Colchester, on Saturday.

In December, the hospitality venue took in more than 100 men – some of which were suffering with mental health issues – after they fled to the UK from their homelands.

During their stunt in front of the hotel entrance the right wing demonstrators unveiled a large banner opposing asylum-seekers, which read: “You pay, migrants stay”.

Gazette:

Gazette:

Since then concerns have been raised over the safety of the asylum-seekers staying at the hotel, with calls for the Home Office to move them to better-suited locations.

The Government department has now responded, saying the decision to move asylum-seekers into hotels is one which is well thought through and considered.

READ MORE: ‘Shock’ as far-right activists stage protest outside hotel housing asylum-seekers

A spokesman said: “The welfare of asylum seekers in our care is of the utmost importance and any attempts to fuel resentment towards them are completely unacceptable.

“Whenever we seek to use sites for asylum accommodation, we engage with the local police and other stakeholders to identify any community tensions.

“We continually review the security at asylum accommodation sites with providers.”

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