Essex County Commissioner President – Wayne L. Richardson
The Essex County Board of Commissioners joins Essex County Executive DiVincenzo in the decision to end the contract with ICE and thereby end the confinement of ICE detainees at the Essex County Corrections Facility. It is commendable that other partnerships, particularly the recently announced agreement with the Union County Board of Commissioners, will aid Essex County in maintaining fiscal responsibility.
This board has heard clearly and consistently from constituents concerned about ICE detainees and the County’s contract with ICE. Those concerns have not fallen upon unconcerned ears. I commend the Essex County Corrections Department for the transparency meetings that were held in response to the COVID pandemic and its specific impact on ICE detainees. Speaking personally, as one who believes in equality, equity, and social justice, I do not condone federal policies that detain individuals for no reason other than their unauthorized entry into the United States. In my professional capacity as a labor leader, I wholeheartedly support immigration reform that creates a viable path to citizenship. It is my hope that every detained person receives an expeditious and just resolution to their situation.