In a bold move stirring up controversy, New York City is set to introduce a groundbreaking program, allocating a whopping $53 million towards pre-paid credit cards for asylum seekers. Under this initiative, a family consisting of four migrants, including two children under the age of 17, could potentially receive a substantial sum of $15,200 annually. The Big Apple, known for its progressive stance, is once again at the forefront of contentious social policies, igniting debate across the political spectrum.

Dubbed the Immediate Response Card initiative, details have been shrouded in mystery since its announcement. However, recent revelations shed light on the inner workings of this polarizing program. The city, in partnership with New Jersey-based banking company Mobility Capital Finance (MoCaFi), aims to provide financial assistance directly to asylum seekers, primarily for essential needs like food.

City officials, under mounting scrutiny, are quick to defend the program. The Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) asserts that the allocated funds not only cover administrative costs but also ensure a substantial allowance for migrant families. According to a breakdown provided to The Post, monthly allowances range from $345 for single migrants to a staggering $2,203 for families of eight.

For a family of three or four, monthly allowances of $932 and $1,195 respectively are allocated, enabling them to make purchases at various local establishments, from bodegas to supermarkets. Moreover, additional provisions are made for families with children, including pregnant asylum seekers who receive supplemental support on their pre-paid cards.

While the program’s launch date remains uncertain, it is slated to commence with 500 newly arrived families, with potential expansion to encompass up to 6,500 families, pending its success. Mayor Eric Adams, facing questions regarding his ties to MoCaFi, maintains a stance of professional detachment, emphasizing the program’s potential to address prevalent issues such as food wastage in migrant shelters.

Critics, however, are quick to condemn the initiative, labeling it as an unwarranted handout of taxpayer money. Concerns about accountability and potential misuse of funds loom large, especially amidst revelations of previous contractual engagements between the city and MoCaFi.

Despite the controversy, proponents argue that the program represents a progressive step towards supporting vulnerable communities and streamlining the city’s aid distribution efforts. With tensions running high, the fate of this ambitious endeavor hangs in the balance, poised to shape the socio-political landscape of New York City for years to come.