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Call On New Jersey Governor Murphy to Urge ICE to Free Detained Immigrants & Asylum-Seekers


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“[ICE officials] have exhibited, and continue to exhibit, deliberate indifference to [detained individuals’] medical needs. The spread of COVID-19 is measured in a matter of a single day — not weeks, months, or years — and [ICE] appears to ignore this condition of confinement that will likely cause imminent, life-threatening illness.”

Tens of thousands of immigrants and asylum-seekers are trapped in ICE detention facilities across the U.S., where they cannot practice physical distancing, face increased risk of contracting COVID-19 in overcrowded conditions, and have limited access to medical care. These jails run the risk of becoming incubators for COVID-19.

Over a 1,000 people are detained in New Jersey. The state had the first confirmed case of an individual who contracted COVID-19 while detained in the Bergen County Jail.

Governor Murphy can use his public health authority to pressure ICE to substantially reduce its immigration detention populations in facilities in the state, mitigate the otherwise inevitable spread of COVID-19, and protect immigrants and asylum-seekers.

While representing different organizational views and calls to action, AIUSA is joining together with American Immigration Council, American Immigration Lawyers Association, Families Belong Together, Human Rights First, Human Rights Watch, National Immigrant Justice Center, Never Again Action, OCA — Asian Pacific American Advocates, Oxfam America, Physicians for Human Rights, and the Women's Refugee Commission to demand Governor Murphy to take action to protect immigrants and asylum-seekers in New Jersey.

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Last updated 7 May 2020

Chief of Staff
State of New Jersey