What to do about immigrants

To the editor:

On the front page of Wednesday’s Adirondack Daily Enterprise we learn that Franklin County has declared a state of emergency indicating that they cannot possibly take in any asylum seekers from the expected onslaught of migrants after the end of Title 42. I expect that Essex and other surrounding counties will follow suit.

I would note that we have a major labor shortage in the North Country. Restaurants and other tourist-related businesses cannot find enough staff to allow them to operate fully. Our farmers are also complaining that they cannot find enough workers to help with harvesting, planting and other needs. There is a chronic shortage of healthcare workers to assist the elderly at home and in nursing care facilities. It is also nearly impossible to find people willing to do odd jobs like raking leaves, mowing lawns, etc.

If there is a shortage of such workers, what a great opportunity to welcome those immigrants who have risked life and limb to come to the U.S. We should be doing everything possible to encourage them to come, not establish policies that would prevent them from coming. Governor Hochul has it correct. One of the biggest roadblocks to making this work is that a new immigrant must wait 180 days to begin work. We need major changes in our immigration policies but turning away asylum seekers who only want to work and have a chance at a new life is not the answer. We are a country of immigrants. Each wave brought new and unique skills and traditions. Each also felt initial rejection but eventually they all blended into our society and have made our country stronger for it.

David G. Welch

Lake Placid


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