Arrests made at Yonkers hotel after confrontation between staff and migrants

Marcus Solis Image
Thursday, April 11, 2024
Multiple arrests at Yonkers hotel serving as shelter for migrants
Marcus Solis is live in Yonkers following reports of multiple migrant arrests.

YONKERS, New York (WABC) -- Multiple arrests were made at a hotel in Yonkers, serving as a shelter for migrants, after a confrontation with staff and migrants.

The incident occurred Tuesday at the Ramada Inn on Tuckahoe Road, when Yonkers Police arrested two migrants, including a woman, who was pushed to the ground during a scuffle with officers.

The images of the confrontation were dramatic as tension reached a boiling point, but many of the asylum seekers staying at that hotel say their frustration has been building for months.

"We escaped our countries because we weren't safe, now we're not safe here," said a migrant from Venezuela, who is among the 82 families being housed at the Ramada Inn.

Migrants first arrived at the location last May, and were welcomed with donations from non-profit groups and Westchester residents. But in the months since, the asylum seekers say they've been harassed by social service administrators and intimidated by security guards they employ.

The chief complaint is workers entering rooms without warning, or with no one present. The occupants have been told the reason is to remove unsafe appliances, like hotpots, which are not allowed.

"My iron, my hair dryer, things for work have disappeared," one migrant said.

Others claim money and jewelry have been stolen. They say their complaints are met with calls to the police.

In one video, asylum seekers themselves called 911, feeling threatened by a security guard walking through the parking lot holding a knife.

Hotel management called police on Eyewitness News, saying they needed an appointment to visit.

Social services at the Ramada are being coordinated by an organization called Westhab.

The Yonkers mayor says they are monitoring the situation.

"I'm mad at those who brought migrants to our community, but certainly we would never treat the migrants with any less dignity than they deserve," Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said.


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