New York state in the last few months has become home to tens of thousands of migrants seeking asylum. Local governments are doing their best to provide the newcomers with roofs over their heads and food to eat.

Now, religious leaders are joining the effort.

They’re calling it a Covenant on Behalf of New York’s Newest New Yorkers, imploring elected officials on the state and federal level to collaborate in welcoming asylum seekers across the state.

“We need an attitude adjustment where we see immigrants as people who improve our local economies,” said Rev. Peter Cook, executive director of the New York State Council of Churches.

Faith leaders representing various religions are joining forces.

“We know that community works best when everyone has a place at the table,” said Rev. Dustin Wright Longmeyer, pastor of Messiah Lutheran Church and director of the Rotterdam Community Center.

Advocating for migrants to be provided shelter, health services, education and legal assistance.

“We can have issues, we can have differences, but we will not tolerate hate," said Rashida Taylor, deputy executive director of the New York State Council of Churches. "And I think this covenant is a good place to start.”

The group insists it’s standing by, ready to help in any way possible.

“I’ve been working to coordinate volunteers to conduct basic intakes, coordinate food and clothing distributions and facilitate Know Your Rights clinics,” said Azouke Sanon of the Columbia County Sanctuary Movement.

The covenant condemns county leaders who’ve taken steps to block New York City from sending migrants to their communities.

“Why, if you are a county experiencing population loss, are you putting up a moratorium for more people to your county and contribute?” Cook said.

Local leaders who have fought the intake of migrants from New York City have said their governments cannot bear the financial burden of caring for asylum seekers. State officials have adamantly said counties will not be responsible for the costs.

The group is concerned about the state's financial outlook, facing multi-billion dollar budget gaps the next three years. They want the state to raise taxes on the rich and tap into the state's $19 billion in rainy day funds.

"It’s going to be much more efficient if the state can allocate some of that money to upstate communities,” Cook said.

Asked about the budget outlook, Gov. Kathy Hochul said it will depend on where things stand with migrants in March, but all scenarios are being looked at.