Report: The Expansion and Failed Reform of Immigration Detention in New Jersey

New Jersey Advocates Release Report Denouncing Conditions in

Essex County Immigration Detention Facilities

Newark, NJ – New Jersey Advocates for Immigrant Detainees* and the NYU School of Law Immigrant Rights Clinic will release a comprehensive report on immigration detention in Essex County.  The report, “Immigration Incarceration:  The Expansion and Failed Reform of Immigration Detention in Essex County, NJ,” takes a hard look at the results of the expansion of immigration detention in Essex County and will be released on March 23, 2012 at a conference on immigration detention issues at Rutgers—Newark Center for Law & Justice.** A full copy of the report is available online at Continue reading


Video: Wells Fargo Is Not Our Friend!



Kathy O’Leary, Pax Christi NJ, 973-610-1684, 
Sally Pillay, IRATE & First Friends, 201-394-9093, 
Br.John Skrodinsky(English & Spanish), 973-896-0444,


Pilgrims To March from Ellis Island in Liberty State Park to the Elizabeth Detention Center for the 3rd Consecutive Year on Ash Wednesday.

Jersey City, NJ– Beginning at 10 am on Wednesday, February 22, members from over two dozen faith based, community and immigrant rights groups, including members from Pax Christi NJ, IRATE & First Friends, American Friends Service Committee Immigrant Rights Program- Newark and NJ Advocates for Immigrant Detainees, will gather in Liberty State Park, just off Freedom Way, in front of the footbridge to Ellis Island for a press conference and prayer service before beginning a 12 mile “pilgrimage” that will end at theElizabethDetentionCenter. Continue reading

For Sandals & Silver – 3rd Annual Pilgrimage from Ellis Island to the EDC

For Sandals & Silver
“Because they hand over the just for silver, and the poor for a pair of sandals; they trample the heads of the destitute into the dust of the earth, and force the lowly out of the way. “ Amos 2: 6-7

Beginning with a prayer service & press conference At 10:00 am at Freedom Way (Liberty State Park), Jersey City, NJ on Wednesday February 22nd

Ending with a prayer service and distribution of ashes at the Gates of the Elizabeth Detention Center 625 Evans St., Elizabeth, NJ

Join us as we walk 12 miles from the footbridge at Ellis Island (a powerful symbol of our nation’s history of welcoming immigrants), to the barbed wire fences at the gates of the Elizabeth Detention Center. Approximately 2000 immigrants are currently being held in NJ in the Elizabeth Detention Center and local county jails. The number of immigrants being held in NJ continues to rise because there is money to be made from incarcerating people. County jails receive reimbursement from the federal government at a higher rate than it costs to house immigrant detainees and private companies like Corrections Corp of America and Community Education Centers profit from their contracts with the counties and with the federal government. Further, banks like Wells Fargo profit from their investments in these private companies.

Sponsored By IRATE & First Friends & Pax Christi NJ

co-sponsored by: AFSC Immigrant Rights Program – Newark, Wind of the Spirit

For more information, to sign up to walk, or to co-sponsor contact Kathy O’Leary 908-273-0751

End Detention Abuse: Free Charley Chehoud!

Charley Chehoud is an asylum seeker who left Lebanon in 1989 to escape religious persecution. He has worked with New Jersey police for years – even helping solve a high profile murder case. Because of a missed court date, he is facing deportation and ICE continues to hold him in solitary confinement.

Vigil Demanding ICE  Stop Inhumane Treatment of Immigrants and Release Charley

Tuesday January 31st from 12pm- 3pm

Essex County Correctional Facility (354 Doremus Avenue, Newark, NJ 07105) Continue reading

Cronyism, political donations surround detention center in Newark, says report by immigrant advocates

Cronyism, political donations surround detention center in Newark, says report by immigrant advocates

By Eunice Lee/The Star-Ledger
NEWARK — Immigrant advocates released a report Tuesday detailing what they describe as campaign contributions and hidden political ties behind the nonprofit group that subcontracts services for Delaney Hall, a private detention facility in Newark.

The 19-page report comes almost a week after the Essex County freeholders awarded a lucrative immigrant-detention contract to the group, Education and Health Centers of America. Immigration advocates include in the report what they describe as “crony connections and a system of elected and un-elected political bosses in Essex County which limit transparency and oversight” surrounding the detention center. Continue reading

Essex County Immigration Detention Expansion, an Invitation for Abuse

Essex County Immigration Detention Expansion, an Invitation for Abuse

 Background: In early August, Essex County Executive, Joe DiVincenzo, entered into a new Inter-Governmental Services Agreement (IGSA) with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to increase the number of ICE detainees held in Essex County from 500 to 1,250.  Until the new agreement, New Jersey had experienced a continued increase in the number of immigration detention having reached the previous all time high of approximately 1,600 beds in February, 2010.  The Essex County Correctional Facility immediately added 300 additional beds, and the privately-run Delaney Hall opened to 68 women and 382 men opened in October. The total number of detention beds in New Jersey is now around 2,350.

Download Full Report Continue reading