The Tenement Museum in New York has seen an unprecedented number of negative comments by visitors about immigrants.
The museum, which holds tours for small groups with the stated mission of enhancing the publics appreciation for the role immigration plays in shaping American identity, is giving its guides new training to help them deal with the increase in hostile remarks, the Thompson Reuters Foundation reported.
Immigration policy was a central issue in the campaign of President-elect Donald Trump, with as many as two-thirds of his followers calling immigration a very big problem in the country. Only 17 percent of Hillary Clintons followers said the same.
People will now share stronger opinions about whether or not they think immigrants are sort of bleeding [the country], theyre taking too much that other people should have, or theyre taking our jobs, said Miriam Bader, the museums director of education.
The museum is located in the heart of the historic Jewish Lower East City of Manhattan. One of its key exhibits is the restored 1878 home of the German-Jewish Gumpertz family. A new exhibit on more recent waves of migrants from China and Puerto Rico is set to open in July 2017.
Museum officials told the Thomson Reuters Foundation that hostile remarks, previously infrequent, now occur every day. The museums management put in place the new compulsory training program in September. Since then, guides have begun meeting informally to address challenging remarks that have come up during tours.
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