(The Center Square) – Dozens of ticket holders for the Army-Navy football game to be held at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro have had their hotel reservations canceled in lieu of housing asylum-seekers.
In response, a state representative is filing legislation against the state’s right to shelter law.
State Rep. Peter Durant, R-Worchester, wants to quash hotel cancellations for “legal residents.” The Republican representative and state Senate candidate is taking aim at Gov. Maura Healey for declaring Massachusetts a sanctuary state for migrants.
“Enough is enough by this pro-illegal alien governor,” Durant said. “She has not only made us into a sanctuary state, but a haven for those who illegally entered our country. It is both outrageous and an embarrassment to our state that veterans are being displaced out of hotels for illegals so that they cannot attend the Army vs. Navy football game.”
Long one of college sports’ greatest competitions matched by surrounding pageantry, Army and Navy will play Dec. 9 in the home of the NFL New England Patriots.
According to published reports, three hotels owned by Giri Hotel Management are involved in a pact with the state to provide housing. A company statement said it was committed “to providing shelter and support to refugees at our hotels.” It also said, “As a gesture of solidarity and humanitarian responsibility, we are opening our doors to those seeking refuge in our community.”
Durant cited Massachusetts’s right to shelter law, which provides families access to adequate housing and shelter. Massachusetts is the only state with such a law. Durant says the first-term governor is abusing the law.
“In our ongoing effort to stop the abuse of the right to shelter law, I will be filing legislation to stop Governor Healey from canceling hotel reservations for our legal citizens,” said Durant.
The governor came under heat after The Boston Globe was first to report the cancellations. The game, held in various neutral sites for decades, draws a large contingent of service members and veterans.
Healey responded to the report, saying area hotels made the decision.
“I am very distressed to learn that any veteran may have been moved from a hotel, who had booked a hotel for that game. As I understand it, those were decisions made by area hotels,” said the governor.
In response, Healey has directed her secretary of Veterans Services, Jon Santiago, to reach out to those impacted.
Durant says the governor is dishonest, blaming her administration for contracting with the hotels.
“She knows that her administration has contracted with these hotels,” he said. “For her to put the sole blame on the hotels is disappointing.
“If she wanted to stop this she could! She knows that I have filed the legislation to end the right to shelter law for illegals. All she has to do is call the speaker and the Senate president to get the bill passed.”