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New Jersey Senate Passes Immigration Detention Ban

Plus: New York City immigration court reopenings raise deportation fears, and what REALID means for immigrants.

The New Jersey state Senate passed a bill Thursday that bars state agencies and private jails from starting or renewing contracts with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to detain immigrants. New Jersey is the second state, after California, to block the opening of new ICE detention centers. “The statewide ban would confirm the message that continues to be raised at the local level — profiting off of pain and family separation contradicts New Jersey Values,” Amy Torres, executive director of the New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice, said in a statement. ICE currently has five detention centers in the state and CoreCivic, a private prison company, runs the Elizabeth Detention Center. Law360 

In other local immigration news…

Chaotic Immigration Court Reopenings Raise Deportation Fears

📍 Documented Original
In November, Modesto arrived for his immigration court hearing, but New York City’s Federal Plaza, home to its immigration courts, was closed. The government never sent the Ecuadorian citizen an official notice of a new date for his asylum case. Modesto is one of tens of thousands of individuals who’ve had their cases rescheduled due to the pandemic. Advocates are afraid rescheduling notices aren’t being sent to immigrants with open cases. And starting on July 6, when New York City immigration courts reopen at Broadway and Federal Plaza, they fear immigrants who missed their cases could face deportation. Read more at Documented.

REAL ID: Appointment Requirements, Cost, and How to Get One

📍 Documented Original
This explanation is part of Documented’s Glossary to ensure our readers understand the U.S. immigration system. A REAL ID is a DMV-issued driver’s license, learner’s permit or non-driver ID that is federally compliant, and will be required after May 2023 to board domestic flights or enter federal buildings. The identification was part of the REAL ID Act of 2005, which “established minimum security standards for license issuance and production” in states around the U.S. The compliance was originally supposed to begin in October 2020, but was postponed because of the pandemic. Documented’s Rommel H. Ojeda lists information on appointment requirements, cost and how to obtain one. Read more at Documented. Find the Spanish version here

New Jersey Advocates Applaud $3 Million Program for Unaccompanied Minors

The New Jersey Consortium for Immigrant Children and other member organizations are celebrating state lawmakers for creating the first state-funded program to provide legal representation and case management to unaccompanied immigrant minors. The organization fought for the $3 million program that passed on Thursday. With this program, New Jersey will become the second state to design a statewide and state-funded legal representation program for unaccompanied minors. “Most children and youth whom the government is trying to deport from New Jersey are unrepresented,” said Emily Chertoff, executive director of the Consortium. “No one should go to immigration court alone, and it is simply inhumane to demand this of children.” Deanna Garcia for Documented.

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