Senator Warren, Massachusetts Leaders in Congress Ask FEMA and DHS for Assistance on Recently Arrived Asylum Seekers
“We respectfully ask for your continued assistance to ensure that the federal government is a helpful partner to those doing important humanitarian work on the ground”
Washington D.C. – U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and members of the Massachusetts delegation sent a letter asking the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to use their administrative authorities to ensure that the Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) is awarding funds as quickly as possible, and with as little bureaucratic delay as possible, to Massachusetts entities that are providing humanitarian aid to migrants flown to Martha’s Vineyard and to others who have recently arrived in the Boston area.
“We would like to request that you use your administrative authorities to ensure that FEMA’s EFSP is awarding funds as quickly as possible, and with as little bureaucratic delay as possible, to Massachusetts entities providing important assistance to migrants,” wrote the lawmakers.
The letter was also signed by Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Representatives Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), Seth Moulton (D-Mass.), Katherine Clark (D-Mass.), Stephen F. Lynch (D-Mass.), James P. McGovern (D-Mass.), Jake Auchincloss (D-Mass.), Lori Trahan (D-Mass.), and William Keating (D-Mass.).
On September 14, nearly 50 Venezuelan migrants were flown to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. With no advance notice of the arrivals, the community scrambled to provide assistance. Although Massachusetts has proved itself fully capable of providing aid to these families in need, the lawmakers have received multiple inquiries from organizations requesting financial assistance from the federal government. This follows a recent uptick in predominantly Haitian migrants who have arrived in Boston in recent months.
The lawmakers are asking FEMA and DHS to use their administrative authorities to ensure that EFSP is awarding funds as quickly as possible, and with as little bureaucratic delay as possible, to Massachusetts entities that are providing humanitarian aid to migrants.
“Moreover, we ask that if Massachusetts entities seek for their humanitarian work other sources of funding that are within your purview, you work to ensure that this assistance is unlocked and disbursed as expeditiously as possible,” concluded the lawmakers.
Senator Warren has long led efforts to protect the rights of migrants and asylum seekers, including the following steps:
- Last week, Senator Warren joined colleagues in sending a letter to Senate Appropriations Committee leadership urging them to provide additional humanitarian assistance funding for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) in the upcoming Continuing Resolution.
- Also last week, Senator Warren released a statement decrying efforts to use asylum seekers as political pawns and committed to assisting communities in need.
- In July 2022, Senator Warren called on the Biden administration to extend Temporary Protected Status for Venezuela in light of the deteriorating political and economic situation in the country.
- In May 2022, Senator Warren joined a letter to Senate appropriators requesting robust funding for FEMA’s EFSP program for the upcoming year.
- In February 2022, Senator Warren joined a letter to President Biden expressing concern over the treatment of Black migrants attempting to seek asylum.
- In October 2021, Senator Warren joined a letter to the Departments of Homeland Security and State expressing outrage over the cruel treatment of Haitian migrants attempting to seek asylum.
Next Article Previous Article