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Assemblyman Investigation Into Fraudulent Claim About Asylum Seekers/Veteran Displacement

NEWBURGH – State Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson (D, Newburgh) is calling on State Attorney General Letitia James to investigate the Yerik Israel Toney (YIT) Foundation and its CEO, Sharon Toney-Finch, after several news reports debunked Toney-Finch’s recent claim that 20 homeless veterans under YIT care were displaced by asylum seekers at the Crossroads Hotel in the Town of Newburgh.

“The recent arrival of asylum seekers in the Town of Newburgh has caused disruption enough without the additional outrage generated by Toney-Finch’s lies. Before her sham was revealed, Republican legislators like Assemblymember Brian Maher, Senator Rob Rolison, and Senator Bill Weber quickly moved to fan the flames of xenophobia by recklessly amplifying Toney-Finch’s falsehoods on Fox News and a range of other media outlets,” Jacobson said.

Maher told Mid-Hudson News that he was duped into believing YIT’s lies.

Last week, Toney-Finch recruited several homeless men from a shelter in Poughkeepsie and allegedly offered them food and money to pose as YIT-assisted veterans who were kicked out of their lodging by the newly arrived migrants. According to reports, either Toney-Finch or an associate doctored credit card receipts to make it look like the Crossroads Hotel had accepted payment to house YIT “veterans,” Jacobson said.

“Adding to the demagoguery, Toney-Finch’s actions compounded an already volatile situation and put both the asylum seekers and the staff at the Crossroads Hotel at risk,” he said.

“It will be months before the full extent of Toney-Finch’s falsehoods are known, but I call on the attorney general to investigate YIT, Toney-Finch, and the events of the past week to ensure that everyone involved with these lies is held accountable,” Jacobson said.

Source: Mid-Hudson News

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