The Human Stories Behind the Immigration Detention Contract

Via IRATE & First Friends Since Essex County signed its contract with ICE to expand immigration detention to 1250 people this past fall, Essex County has been in the news.   Not just for the shady back doors deals and political contributions from the private for-profit company that received the immigration detention subcontract but also for the suffering that this contract is causing to local residents and their families.

In October, there was the story of Neida Lavayen whose fiance was taken into custody one week before their wedding and held at Delaney Hall until he was deported to Ecuador. Continue reading

Cronyism, political donations surround detention center in Newark, says report by immigrant advocates

Cronyism, political donations surround detention center in Newark, says report by immigrant advocates

By Eunice Lee/The Star-Ledger
NEWARK — Immigrant advocates released a report Tuesday detailing what they describe as campaign contributions and hidden political ties behind the nonprofit group that subcontracts services for Delaney Hall, a private detention facility in Newark.

The 19-page report comes almost a week after the Essex County freeholders awarded a lucrative immigrant-detention contract to the group, Education and Health Centers of America. Immigration advocates include in the report what they describe as “crony connections and a system of elected and un-elected political bosses in Essex County which limit transparency and oversight” surrounding the detention center. Continue reading

Essex County Immigration Detention Expansion, an Invitation for Abuse

Essex County Immigration Detention Expansion, an Invitation for Abuse

 Background: In early August, Essex County Executive, Joe DiVincenzo, entered into a new Inter-Governmental Services Agreement (IGSA) with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to increase the number of ICE detainees held in Essex County from 500 to 1,250.  Until the new agreement, New Jersey had experienced a continued increase in the number of immigration detention having reached the previous all time high of approximately 1,600 beds in February, 2010.  The Essex County Correctional Facility immediately added 300 additional beds, and the privately-run Delaney Hall opened to 68 women and 382 men opened in October. The total number of detention beds in New Jersey is now around 2,350.

Download Full Report Continue reading

Release of Report on Political Connections in Immigration Detention Contract

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 19 December 2011
Immigration Advocates to Release Report on Political Connections Surrounding Contract for Immigration Detention in Essex County

Report entitled “An Invitation for Abuse” details campaign contributions, lobbying and crony connections. Release timed to coincide with the 1 year anniversary of the announcement of selection of Essex County Jail and Delaney Hall as the new model for immigration detention

Conference Call – Immigration advocates from across the country will be available by teleconference tomorrow at 2 pm Eastern Time to discuss the findings of a report titled Essex County Immigration Detention Expansion, an Invitation for Abuse.  The report details large campaign contributions from CEC to elected officials and how that money supports crony connections and a system of elected and un-elected political bosses in Essex County which limit transparency and oversight.  Participants will include the reports authors, and contributors who are members of Enlace’s prison site fight working group.  The working group was convened this past August as a part of Enlace’s prison industry divestment campaign. Continue reading