Watch CBS News

Denver Rescue Mission helping migrants, now up to about 150, that arrived in Denver as Texas denies sending them to Colorado

Denver Rescue Mission helping migrants, now up to about 150
Denver Rescue Mission helping migrants, now up to about 150 02:14

Close to 150 migrants who recently arrived in Denver are receiving shelter and resources from the city, as well as multiple community organizations.  

On Tuesday, the city and county of Denver activated an emergency shelter to accommodate up to 100 migrants who arrived in the city overnight Monday. It's set up at one of the city's recreation centers. The city is not disclosing the specific location at this time for safety reasons.  

"We really had to mobilize and ensure that we could assist with the overflow, so we established an emergency shelter," Mikayla Ortega, the communications manager with the Denver Office of Emergency Management. 

Denver OEM said since Monday night, dozens of migrants arrived at Union Station. It's unclear exactly where they most recently travelled from.  

A spokesperson for the Denver Rescue Mission tells CBS News Colorado many of the migrants later showed up at the Lawrence Street shelter.  

"They came to Denver Rescue Mission looking for assistance and we're going to provide that for them," said Stephen Hinkel, public relations manager for the Rescue Mission.  

The Denver Rescue Mission is currently housing 50 migrants for the time being, many of whom are Venezuelan. 

Nearly 100 more are in Denver's emergency shelter, where several organizations are providing food and resources.  

City officials told CBS Colorado they are now considering activating their Emergency Operations Center to help the migrants, which would bring in resources from more agencies. 

"Whatever their needs may be, that's where our nonprofit partners come in and they help us bridge that gap," said Ortega.  

While states such as Texas and Florida have recently transported migrants to big cities, Denver officials said this arrival does not appear to be politically motivated.  

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's office said the group was not sent by Texas. The office of Ron DeSantis did not respond to CBS News Colorado's inquiry Wednesday.  

The offices of Sens. Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper both confirmed they are in touch with Denver officials and monitoring the situation.  

A spokesman for Gov. Jared Polis released the following statement:  

"The Governor continues to call on Congress to pass real, comprehensive immigration that includes better border security and workable pathways for legal immigration and refugees resettlement -- it's the humane thing to do and it will greatly benefit our economy and our communities. The Governor has long supported fixing our broken immigration system that is failing everyone right now." 

According to Denver OEM, the city has seen a steady influx of migrants from the southern border over the past several months. This week's arrival taxed the shelter system, forcing the city into establishing an emergency shelter at a local rec center, Ortega said.  

Denver is a so-called, "sanctuary city," meaning local authorities won't deport people or cooperate with federal immigration officials in attempts to deport people. 

"Denver is a very welcoming city, we work to provide resources and support to migrants who find themselves in our city, and in this situation it's no different, just on a larger scale," Ortega said.  

The city says it's working on communicating with folks to address their needs and figure out the next steps 

For people wanting to help, you can donate to one of the multiple organizations working with the migrants.  

Denver is encouraging people to send their donations to the Denver Community Church, American Friends Service Committee, or the Colorado Hosting Asylum Network. Additionally, if members of the public are interested in volunteering, they need to be registered and credentialed. To register, they can visit

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.