According to the national media, the number of homeless living inside JFK Airport in Queens is rising.
A flight attendant told FOX 5 NY that a popular destination for the homeless is the walkway between the air train and Terminal 5 because it is heated. On a cold winter’s day, you can find anywhere from 5-10 individuals taking shelter.
Staff believes that people are taking the subway to Jamaica Station, and using the Air Train to get inside the airport, which is a public place, meaning security can’t kick the unhoused out.
While some people said they never feel unsafe by the presence of the homeless, female flight attendants arriving and departing in the early or late hours said they feel unsafe every day.
Only when the homeless become violent can staff call Port Authority Police. The Port Authority tells FOX 5 NY that it coordinates with the non-profit Urban Pathways, tasked with providing outreach, offering at-risk New Yorkers housing, services, and support.
For now, JFK Airport remains an option for the growing number of homeless in New York City. The number of un-housed single adults is now 117% higher than it was 10 years ago, according to the Coalition for the Homeless.