Feeding Migrants Creates Dilemma for Staten Island Pizzeria

  • With regards to serving to Venezuelan migrants, Sebastian Bongiovanni, proprietor of Verde’s Pizza and Pasta Home, feels torn between his political opinions and spiritual convictions.
  • The migrants are a part of an enormous inflow that has brought on a humanitarian disaster for New York Metropolis this yr.

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As a Republican, Sebastian Bongiovanni, proprietor of Verde’s Pizza and Pasta Home in Staten Island, New York, isn’t comfortable concerning the latest wave of Venezuelan migrants pouring into the realm. However as a Catholic, he feels it’s his Christian responsibility to assist them.

Doing the Christian factor has made Verde’s a flashpoint for criticism within the West Shore neighborhood of Travis, the place his store is positioned, in line with Fox 5 and different media retailers. It presents a tricky dilemma for Bongiovanni, particularly since he simply opened his restaurant in September and might’t danger alienating his buyer base, which is primarily conservative in its politics.

A few of the lately arrived migrants are being housed by the town in little-used accommodations close by. And once they present up at Verde’s, Bongiovanni feeds them without charge—he feels it’s the appropriate factor to do. He has additionally delivered free pies to the accommodations, Gothamist stories.

Within the case of 1 group of newcomers to the nation, “They mentioned they hadn’t eaten in three days, and once we fed them, they ate like they hadn’t eaten in three days,” Bongiovanni informed Fox 5.

The migrants haven’t been welcomed by everybody within the neighborhood. In response to Gothamist, two thirds of Travis voters supported Donald Trump for president within the final two elections. Some locals have claimed, with none factual foundation, that the migrants are violent convicts launched from Venezuelan prisons, Gothamist stories.

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Verde’s Pizza and Pasta Home / Fb

“We’re Republican, and we really feel there needs to be a border, and…there needs to be an orderly means” to cope with migrants, Bongiovanni informed Fox 5. “Lots of people really feel these migrants are overstepping the road, leaping the road, and I completely get that.”

However, he added, “I’m Catholic first, and, you realize, hear, if I can assist folks, I’ll.”

New York Metropolis has been struggling for months to handle the inflow of migrants searching for refuge. Per the New York Day by day Information, almost 20,000 migrants have poured into the town this yr. Earlier this month, the Biden administration unveiled a brand new coverage to show away many migrants from the southwestern border of the U.S. “Efficient instantly, Venezuelans who enter america between ports of entry, with out authorization, might be returned to Mexico,” the Division of Homeland Safety mentioned in a press release final week.

Verde’s Pizza and Pasta Home’s legacy dates again to 1980 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the place “Grandpa Joe” based Verdes Italian Eatery, in line with the pizzeria’s web site. Though Verde’s Pizza and Pasta Home makes use of a lot of Grandpa Joe’s recipes, they had been all created by his spouse, recognized merely as “Grandma” on the positioning.

The web menu presents little in the way in which of particulars concerning the particular person pizzas, however specialty pies embrace the Sophia Loren, the Grandma, the John Wayne, and Verde’s Al Capone Pizza. Meatball dishes, calzones, sandwiches, paninis, pasta entrees and wraps spherical out Verde’s intensive menu.

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