This summary was featured in Documented’s Early Arrival newsletter. You can subscribe to receive it in your inbox three times per week here.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has announced the restoration of the $34 million leftover money from the ‘Excluded New Jerseyans Fund’, which was recently reallocated for state expenses following a federal deadline. The news came hours after advocates with Make The Road New Jersey demonstrated in front of the statehouse. Just $6 million of the $40 million covid-19 relief fund was used by Dec 31, and last week, the governor’s office announced the remaining resources will be diverted for expenses the state incurred during the pandemic such as payroll or other departmental costs. Advocates protested saying many workers didn’t receive any money from the fund, and those who were lucky received $2000 to $4000—an insufficient amount to help them. WNYC/Gothamist.
In other local immigration news…
New Report Details Inadequacy of NJ Excluded Workers Fund
COVID-19 relief aid for excluded workers in New Jersey pales in comparison to funding available to unemployed U.S citizens, the New Jersey Policy Perspective details in a new report. The Excluded New Jerseyans Fund, which awards a maximum of $2,000 to an individual and $4,000 for a household, is insufficient for a month, let alone the duration of the pandemic, the think tank’s report states. A family budget calculator shows one adult in Mercer County spends $3,300 per month, while an adult and child would spend $5,500, and two adults with two children spend about $7,900. The funding program distributed the same amount in spite of household size. NJPP
Documented Exclusive: Excluded Workers Fund in New York hit with debit card thefts
|In case you missed it, Documented recently reported an exclusive story detailing how more than 70 Excluded Workers Fund beneficiaries have reported their funds being stolen via card skimming, leaving one person’s account with a loss of nearly $6,000. Card fraud has been on the rise in New York, but immigrant advocates fear EWF recipients were specifically targeted given the high number of beneficiaries that had their information stolen. Some people who disputed the unauthorized transactions have received their money back, while others are still waiting. Our latest report is a deep assessment of what allowed the unauthorized transactions to happen. Read it here.|
From the Protest in Times Square, We Cover Street Vendors’ March for Permits
Street vendors, allied community organizations, and politicians marched on Thursday in Times Square to support the immediate passage of legislation S1175/A5081, which would regularize and decriminalize street vending in New York.
Our reporter Rommel Ojeda spoke to participants at the protest.
Here’s what some of them said:
- “For far too long, street vendors have been harassed, fined by city and state agencies, and ignored in their greatest hour of need,” said New York City Council Member Carlina Rivera. “They deserve the same resources and protections available to any brick-and-mortar business.”
- “By fixing the broken system, the city and the state would also benefit by folding these small businesses and entrepreneurs into the tax base.” said Emerita Torres, Vice President for Policy Research and Advocacy at the Community Service Society of New York. “Intro 1116 was an important step but now it is time to pass S1175A/A5081A and remove caps on permits and licenses.”
This Documented piece gives background on street vendors’ struggles, and you can watch and read more on yesterday’s rally here.