$200 Million, Jailed Immigrants and a Democratic Bastion Under Fire

A New Jersey county in one of the bluest regions of the country faces mounting pressure to stop housing detained immigrants in its jail.

Comments: 24

  1. If you run a jail for profit, it would seem obvious that you want to minimize costs. That would be true for private jails as well county jails. Migrants have committed a crime - entering the country illegally, but this is not the same as robbery, assault or murder. They came seeking a better life, and if the government sees a need to hold them, county jails are not the place. After all, the county is doing this to make money, and whatever it can save on food, maintenance of facilities and providing comfort and amenities for the prisoners helps the bottom line.

  2. @David Gordon Agree on most points. But, actually, those detained by ICE --or the police, for that matter--have been accused of committing a crime. Innocent until proven guilty and all that. ICE does make mistakes. It's a shame that the groups can't sit down with the local government and figure out what is the best way to support the immigrants.

  3. @ehr "hose detained by ICE --or the police, for that matter--have been accused of committing a crime" is factually untrue. Being in the US while undocumented is a civil, not a criminal, violation. And the New Jersey ICE field office aggressively makes noncriminal arrests at the highest rate in the entire nation. These are not "mistakes," that is their mandate--wasting taxpayer money to stalk parents dropping children at school, for instance. You can read more about it here, with plenty of data: https://www.nj.com/data/2018/03/ice_arrested_more_than_twice_as_many_non-criminals.html

  4. @Caz the civil fine for being in USA illegally is $700 a day.

  5. These persons made their own decision to break into this country illegally and live outside the law.In order to determine if they are criminals or if they are in deportation proceedings they need to be detained by the authorities and law enforcement officials . There is no country on earth including here where individuals are allowed to enter illegally and /or beak the law in any way.They made that decision on their own to take advantage of another country and it's laws ,unfortunately they must endure the consequences the same as any American would ,here or in a foreign nation.

  6. Sorry. Can’t abide treating humans worse than animals, regardless of what laws have been broken. These so called contractors are being paid exorbitantly with our tax dollars. They should be running facilities that achieve baseline humane conditions for these inmate, pending either immigration trials or deportation.

  7. I dont think you'll find anyone who thinks treating detainees like animals is a good idea. The nature of the contention, however, is whether or not illegal immigrants should be detained and deported. My problem and as many others in the comments have noted is that the Left media, including this very paper that is suppose to profess the truth, fails to make this distinction time and time again. The headline of this article does not make clear that this is about illegal immigrants, rather than legal ones. Shame on the Democrats and their media machines.

  8. These people were caught living in the United States without authorization. As this paper delineated in the article “How ICE Picks Its Targets in the Surveillance Age”, it may require the use of multiple expensive resources and weeks of work to locate and nab just one unauthorized migrant who is hiding in plain sight. Articles in other media have frequently described unauthorized migrants who had been allowed out of detention, after agreeing to wear an ankle bracelet, and then, once out of detention, have cut their bracelets off. It is easy for an unauthorized migrant to blend into the general population - especially where there are many immigrants. Thus, once an unauthorized migrant has been caught, he must be either deported, or if he wants to appeal his deportation order, he must be detained. We could change the appeal process, such that the migrant could be deported to their home country and appeal from there. Most unauthorized migrants are from Mexico so we could make it such that they could appeal from the Mexican border or from any U.S. embassy in Mexico. If the unauthorized migrant is from Central America, Mexico would give him a temporary work permit while he awaited his immigration hearing. Those unauthorized migrants who want to appeal their deportation orders from the U.S. should agree to dust, cook, wash, and perform other chores at a detention center in exchange for their being allowed to remain here while their appeals are pending.

  9. If the County executive would stop spending money to develop South Mountain Reservation, maybe property taxes could actually support the county.

  10. The immigrants in this facility are referred to as inmates. Being in this country without documentation is a civil, not a criminal offense. Please refer to these people as detainees. Inmates have criminal offenses.

  11. Liberals love to scream, "Let them in" ... then whisper, "As long as they don't live near me."

  12. @Aaron You might want to reconsider that non sequitor. Aside from being off-topic, it doesn't exactly square with the alt-white bogeyman of "sanctuary cities." How many of those are in red counties?

  13. Joe D is about 1 thing and 1 thing only. Power. Every pol in Essex county has to bend the knee and in this case it means pretending that this doesn’t exist on their doorstep. Good for Gill to be standing up for what is right. These people are not criminals, they are sadly being treated as such. A dentention center is not the same as a jail or prison. Would that Booker had enough stones to confront Joe D over this and force improvements at least in the conditions there.

  14. What about a grass-roots program where concerned people can "adopt" an immigrant family (or individuals) pending a resolution of their legal status?

  15. The protesters, who actually also protest against and call for disobedience of the laws of their own country as they vehemently defend those who committed a crime, do not say what to do with the detainees? Let them free, what else? Whoever comes to this country, regardless of the manner in which he or she or their children entered, should be able to roam free, is that it? It's a dire situation but the protest is abominable.

  16. Yes. that is it. Land of the free, that was stolen.

  17. Deport them and others who are illegally in the country as soon as they are identified.

  18. I am an Essex County resident and taxpayer, and I am appalled that my county executive thinks that detaining immigrants seeking a better life in exchange for federal money is an acceptable way to pay for our budget. When I take my daughter to the zoo or the nearby county park, I now have to wonder if the baby swings were funded by human suffering. We should not be part of a system that destroys families to fund local family amusements.

  19. To the County Executive’s point, being near family and counsel is vital to due process. Recently a number of detained immigrants have been moved to Mississippi from New Jersey. Access to counsel, family, friends, etc makes it nearly impossible for a detained immigrant to vindicate his/her rights. Abolish ICE? Great, but in the meantime protestors should recognize what could happen if immigrants are moved out of the New York City area.

  20. @Name Required By definition, they are immigrants. And none of them have declared themselves citizens.

  21. Regardless of the far left anti-fa protesters who believe ICE should be abolished and the borders opened, we have laws in this country. When those laws are not followed and/or those responsible for enforcing the law are not respected, we cease to have a civilized society. That is the problem with these protesters - not only are they attacking the agency whose roll it is to enforce the law, they are attacking those working there, and some are destroying property. The far left applauds this behavior, as do most of the current Dem candidates. Abysmal.

  22. @Ma I live in the NJ county where this issue is being debated. No one is being attacked and no property is being destroyed. There have been peaceful rallies outside of local detention centers attended by families with children. There have also been well-attended local county government meetings where opponents of the ICE contract have waited in line to make public comments. As you list your location well outside of our area and have not been to these meetings, I encourage you to not spread mischaracterizations of the families and neighbors petitioning their local government here in NJ.

  23. $200 mill goes as long way being spread around. Christmas came early and the buzzards are circling the goodies.