We Must Not Balance Budgets with Blood Money

Laura Morowitz
Published: 05/18/2021

Imagine being imprisoned, perhaps for years, despite committing no crime other than fleeing danger and seeking asylum. Imagine learning that the facility in which you are being held against your will is finally releasing you, only to learn that, instead, they are transferring you to another facility to suffer abuse, humiliation, and possible death due to COVID. This is the very real fate that detainees at the Essex County Correctional Facility now face. Thanks to years of pressure from activists, Essex County announced it is terminating its contract with ICE (although it will, tragically, continue to “house” the overflow of innocent detainees from Hudson County).

Rather than releasing these innocent people to await their fair hearings, other facilities and counties in other places are already rubbing their hands with glee, imagining how they too might profit on the backs of these people, eager to earn a little more blood money by receiving these new prisoners. We must not let that happen! Write to your state and local representatives and demand that they ensure the detainees from Essex County be released rather than transferred to yet another facility, sentenced to prison not for any wrongdoing, but because their dehumanization assures that the big bucks keep rolling in.

Topics: Essex County, NJICEImmigration