Adams says empty NYC hotels should be converted into permanent housing for the homeless

New York City hotels that have been left empty by the epidemic will be converted into “supportive housing” that provides assistance to people battling mental illness or substance abuse and those coming out of prison, under a plan proposed by Eric Adams on Monday, who will likely be the city’s next mayor. .

More than 20 percent of the city’s hotels are now closed, a trade association says. At the same time, the city is facing a homeless crisis, with attitudes growing against the warehousing of homeless people in shelters like barracks and against many severely mentally ill people living on the streets.

“The combination of the Covid-1, the economic downturn and the housing problems we’re having is giving us a chance at life once again,” said Mr. May, who won the June Democratic primary as mayor. Adams said he stood outside a board-up hotel in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. “These hotels are not a sight to behold, use a place where people can look for good, affordable, quality accommodation.”

The details of the plan were slim. Mr. Adams mentioned the possibility of 25,000 converted hotel rooms, but said he would focus on boats outside of Manhattan, where the number of closed hotel rooms is much lower.

He was not clear on his plans and whether current mayor Bill de Blasio and former New York governor Andrew M. Cuomo have already begun building 25,000 auxiliary housing units in the city. About 2030. Mr. A spokesman for Adams’ campaign said Mr. Mr. Adams is considering converting former hotel rooms that have already become homeless shelters into permanent support-accommodation apartments, which Mr. De Blasio discusses.

Mr. Adams said building studio apartments in existing hotels would be much cheaper and faster than creating affordable housing from scratch.

During the mayor’s primary, he was one of several candidates who called for housing in single-room hotels, or an updated version of the SRO, which was once synonymous with isolation and crime in the late 20’s. But it has returned to another city.

“I’m a big‘ modern SRO ’person,” Mr. Adams said. “We can create safer places, especially for single adults, as the population grows.”

The relationship between hotels and homelessness was controversial during the epidemic. At the beginning of the lockdown imposed to prevent the spread of coronavirus, thousands of people living in dorm-style shelters were relocated to hotel rooms, mostly in Manhattan where their presence brought complaints of harassment and sometimes violence from some residents. The city has since moved most people to group shelters.

A number of advocates for homeless people and supportive housing Mr. Supported Adams’ plan and stood by him at the press conference. “Adams could be a mayor who uses this confusing moment to change the course of homelessness,” Laura Maskuch, executive director of the New York-based Supportive Housing Network, said in an interview. “We look forward to working with Adams to implement the nation’s strongest supportive housing program.”

Another advocate, Mr. Inviting Adams to speak, he was a former homeless man known as Shams the Baron and who gained a reputation last year as a true spokesman for the homeless in a Manhattan hotel. At the New York primary, Mr. Da Baron was in favor of more progressive candidates On Mr. Adams, A former police captain. But on Monday he gave the candidate a warm hug and advised him to follow his plan.

“We’re in crisis,” Mr. The Baron said. “Do what it takes to settle people.”

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