TO WIN THE WAR ON THE VIRUS
END THE WAR ON IMMIGRANTS
FREE ALL IMMIGRANT DETAINEES NOW!
Interviews available with former detainees and hunger strikers Marcial Morales, Rory Bonilla, and Bryan Vergara.
Saturday, March 6
Raymond Plaza, Newark Penn Station
NEWARK, N J.— A coalition of immigrant, labor, community, faith, human rights and socialist organizations, will hold a demonstration on Saturday, March 6 at 2 PM at Raymond Plaza in Newark to demand that President Biden and NJ Governor Murphy free all immigrant detainees immediately with emergency orders. They are also demanding that Senators Booker and Menendez introduce legislation, which the Democrats can pass immediately, to end all detentions and deportations and to guarantee EQUAL RIGHTS TO ALL WHO LIVE HERE, regardless of place of birth.
President Biden, Senators Booker and Menendez, Governor Murphy along with many other Democratic officials say they want to fight the virus and end Trump’s vicious anti-immigrant policies.“Well, then, if Biden, Murphy and the others are serious about their opposition to Trump, they need to act now and free all the detainees and shut down these concentration camps, including the ones in New Jersey I was dragged to,” said Marcial Morales, who was held in deplorable conditions at the Essex and Bergen county camps before winning his release after a weeks long hunger strike.
But, despite the campaign rhetoric and promises, 14,000 immigrants remain detained without charge or trial in Essex, Bergen and Hudson County Jails and across the United States. These detainees’ basic human rights have been gravely violated—the detentions are and have always been unconstitutional.The violations of the detainees’ rights undermines the rights of all.
Now the detainees, in overcrowded conditions like other US inmates, are targets for the coronavirus.The detainees are suffering Covid infections at a rate 13 times that of the general population. “They packed us in like cattle,” said Bryan Vergara, who was held at the Hudson county camp until winning his freedom after a long struggle. “When my comrades and I went on a hunger strike to demand our freedom from this death sentence, the authorities punished and threatened us. This included threatening that I would never see my daughter again unless I ended the hunger strike,” he added.
This not only endangers the lives and health of those who are held unconstitutionally. It helps the virus to spread, through the guards and other employees, to the general community. Virus particles don’t check your papers or your birthplace. Holding immigrant detainees is not only an assault on all our rights, a crime against basic justice, it helps the coronavirus to spread, kill and evolve more dangerous variants.
Biden and Murphy must free the immigrants immediately with emergency orders NOW.Booker and Menendez must introduce legislation, which the Democrats can pass immediately, to end all detentions and deportations and to guarantee EQUAL RIGHTS TO ALL WHO LIVE HERE, regardless of place of birth.Every day they delay deepens the injustices and helps the virus. Detainees must be tested for Covid and vaccinated upon release.
Freeing immigrant detainees is an urgent first step towards our goal of a Workers Recovery—ending the pandemic and preventing future pandemics by eliminating the conditions that give rise to them. Where we will rally in the Ironbound, air pollution is among the worst in the nation, leading to asthma rates triple the average, weakening lungs and making them more vulnerable to the coronavirus.Essex County has also had almost triple the COVID mortality rate as the US as a whole. We demand an immediate halt to all further concentration of waste processing in Newark and the immediate initiation of a State-financed project, paid for by taxing the rich, to eliminate the toxic sources of air pollution from all waste treatment, industrial sites and diesel truck traffic.These specific demands are part of our fight to achieve the following goals:
- All who live here, regardless of national origin, immigrant status, race, religion, sexual orientation or gender, have equal rights.We refuse to be divided by racism by sexism by religious bigotry. We oppose institutional racism, discrimination and the disparities created in society. End all deportations, detentions, and violations of due process rights. End all limits on the right to vote, to unionize, to organize and to strike. Freedom of movement for all. Without equal rights, we can’t unite to defend our lives.
- All who live here have the right to quality and equal free education, health care, transportation, housing, clean air and water, and clean energy. The government must provide democratically-controlled quality services for all, paid for by taxing the rich and corporations, defunding the police, slashing weapons spending and ending all US wars, occupations and military aid that force people to migrate.Lack of adequate health care, fossil-fuel-driven air pollution which has weakened everyone’s lungs, and overcrowded housing has led to this pandemic spreading out of control.
- All who live here have the right to good jobs at good, living wages. Providing quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy will also provide guaranteed good jobs for all. The desperation that leads people to risk their health to hang on to a job must end.
- Socialization of finance. Public ownership with democratic control of all finance—banks, insurance, investment companies.The Federal government has bailed out the financial companies with our tax money and without our consent twice over—it must exercise its ownership, not give it away to billionaire shareholders.
Endorsers: Jobs and Equal Rights for ALL, Green Party of NJ, NJ Anti-War Agenda, Central Jersey Coalition Against Endless War, New York State Youth Leadership Council, Freedom For Immigrants, New Jersey Industrial Union Council, Democrats for Change NJ, North New Jersey Democratic Socialists of America, Bergen County Socialists
Sign our Petition!
Call for NY-NJ Regional Online Popular Assembly June 6
We call on all workers and activists from all sectors in New York and NJ to come together for an online Popular Assembly June 6 to agree on common demands and a common plan of action to defend the rights and lives of working people in the face of this emergency.
NEXT Planning Meeting: 2:00 PM, Sunday, May 10 via Zoom. To join, email us at [email protected]
The policies of the billionaires, the capitalists, the Wall Street wizards and their political parties, both Republicans and Democrats, have led to the coronavirus catastrophe. It is they who have slashed health services globally to the point that they are incapable of responding to the virus in time to prevent a pandemic. The consequences are falling on working people everywhere in sickness, layoffs, pay cuts, food shortages and deaths. Workers are in plants unprotected by masks from others next to them. We face weeks without income. We are waiting in miles-long lines at food banks. Workers are dying by the thousands. All are under attack. When all are under attack, all must unite to defend ourselves. It is up to workers who face this crisis to lead the way out of it.
We must unite, meet together online and, as it is safe, in person, to agree democratically on common emergency demands, a common program and above all common actions. Today, strikes at individual workplaces are not enough. But when workers in entire regions carry out united actions, spreading our movement without limit, making demands in our common interest, we can win. The emergency has demonstrated who is really essential in the real economy. It is now that workers must use our collective power to defend ourselves: to plan and carry out coordinated strike actions to demand not only protection against the virus, and 100% maintenance of income, but to demand an end to the conditions that led to the crisis and that are leading towards even greater ones.
Simultaneously with crisis, the predictable collapse of the Sanders campaign has demonstrated anew the utter futility of political reliance on the Democratic party. To win our demands, we must link a mass movement to political electoral action entirely independent of the two parties of the capitalists.
As a starting point for discussions and decisions at the Popular Assembly the Organizing Committee has proposed the following set of IMMEDIATE DEMANDS: Safe working conditions for all workers—NO WORK without PPE for ALL; Free all detainees and parole all non-violent offenders NOW; Unlimited sick pay for ALL; Full maintenance of income for ALL; Cancel all rents, mortgages, utility payments; End all US sanctions on foreign governments.
In addition to the immediate demands, the Organizing Committee has proposed for the consideration of the Popular Assembly a broad program, “The Workers Way Forward”, to eliminate the conditions that led to the pandemic. The four points of the program are:
All who live here have equal rights. End all deportations, end all detentions, end all violations of due process rights, end all limits on the right to vote, to unionize, to organize and to strike. Freedom of movement for all. Without equal rights, we can’t unite to defend our lives.
All who live here have the right to quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy, to clean air, clean water and clean food. The government must provide democratically-controlled quality services for all, paid for by taxing the rich and corporations, slashing weapons spending and ending all US wars, occupations and military aid that force people to migrate. Lack of adequate health care, fossil-fuel-driven air pollution which has weakened everyone’s lungs, and overcrowded housing has led to this pandemic spreading out of control.
All who live here have the right to good jobs at good wages. Providing quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy will also provide good jobs for all. The desperation that leads people to risk their health to hang on to a job must end.
Socialization of finance. Federal ownership of all finance—banks, insurance, investment companies -- with democratic control. The Federal government has bought the financial companies twice over with bailouts—it must exercise its ownership, not give it away to billionaire shareholders.
While the Popular Assembly is mainly aimed as a step in organizing workers of the NY-NJ region, we invite activists from other regions in the US or anywhere else in the world to participate, to organize similar regional online Popular Assemblies and to link with us and each other to work to build a global movement.
Protect Public Health! Parole All Immigrant Detainees NOW!
To protect public health in the face of the rapidly spreading coronavirus pandemic we demand that Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo and County Executives in other counties use their executive powers to immediately parole all immigrant detainees—all held on civil charges—imprisoned under contracts with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) at the Essex County Correctional Facility in Newark, the Hudson County Correctional Facility in Kearny, the Bergen County Jail in Hackensack, the Elizabeth (NJ) Contract Detention Facility, and all other detention centers around the state and country.
Prisons and jails are breeding grounds for viruses. Dr. Ranit Mishori, senior medical adviser at the Physicians for Human Rights, has said it was only a matter of time before the coronavirus infiltrates prisons and detention centers.
The Essex County Correctional Facility (ECCF), where a series of reports over the last decade have documented the facility’s unsanitary conditions, is particularly vulnerable. The latest, a 2019 study by the Department Homeland Security (DHS), found that the jail’s “Food Safety Issues Endanger Detainee Health” and “Facility Conditions Present Risks to Detainee Health and Safety.” Despite reassurances by officials, reports by detainees and advocates confirm that these unsanitary conditions continue, threatening the health and well-being of the detainees AND the general public.
The detainees have not been tried and sentenced for a crime. They are held unconstitutionally on civil charges. Yet by herding them together in a time of pandemic the counties and ICE are condemning many of them to serious illness or even death by coronavirus.
To protect the lives of prisoners who were sentenced for crimes, Iran paroled 54,000 prisoners to avoid spreading the virus. Will New Jersey collaborate with ICE to treat the detainees far more inhumanely?
To protect the health of the detainees and the general public, the detainees must be paroled NOW!
Endorsers: Jobs and Equal Rights for All Campaign; Haiti Solidarity Network/NE; Norther New Jersey Chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America; New Jersey Industrial Union Council; Radical Women; Freedom Socialist Party; Occupy Bergen County; Central Unitarian Church Social Action Team; Close The Camps - New Jersey; Jews Against ICE - New Jersey; Close The Camps - Elizabeth, New Jersey; Never Again Action, NJ
To add your organizational endorsement contact Jay Arena at 504-520-9521 or [email protected]
OUR CANDIDATES FOR THE 29TH STATE ASSEMBLY DISTRICT:
NICHELLE VELAZQUEZ AND YOLANDA JOHNSON
WE DEMAND THAT THE ESSEX COUNTY ICE CONCENTRATION CAMP BE IMMEDIATELY AND PERMANENTLY CLOSED
All who live here, who are of different national origins, races, religions, sexual orientations and genders, have equal rights: they have the right to equal and high quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy, to clean air, clean water and clean food, and they have the right to good jobs at good wages.
ALL WHO LIVE HERE HAVE EQUAL RIGHTS
End mass incarceration, end all deportations, end all detentions, end all violations of due process rights, end all police presence in schools, end all limits on the right to vote, to unionize, to organize and to strike. Freedom of movement for all.
ALL WHO LIVE HERE HAVE THE RIGHT TO EQUAL AND HIGH QUALITY FREE EDUCATION, HEALTH CARE, TRANSPORTATION, HOUSING, AND CLEAN ENERGY
We will not be pitted against each other to fight for a share of inadequate public services. The government can and must provide democratically-controlled quality services for all, paid for by taxing the rich and corporations, slashing weapons spending and ending all US wars, occupations and military aid that force people to migrate.
ALL WHO LIVE HERE HAVE THE RIGHT TO GOOD JOBS AT GOOD WAGES
We will not be pitted against each other to fight for a share of too few, underpaid jobs. Providing equal and high quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy will also provide good jobs for all. It will be a big step towards a democratically-run economy that meets the needs of all-- a socialist society.
Report on Jobs and Equal Rights Campaign
The Jobs and Equal Rights campaign, in the final vote, got over 6,100 votes for our candidate, John Jay Arena for Essex County Executive. This is a lot of votes, considering that the core of the campaign was never more than 10 people, although we know that many of you helped out without coming to any meetings.
Of course, at first glance the 2.6% vote we got does not seem like much compared with the 81% Joe D got, but a close look shows a lot more support for our campaign, and its leading issues.
The key point is that most people did not hear about our campaign at all. Where they did know, because we campaigned by canvassing, handing out flyers and postering, support was much higher. The maps on our website show the election districts with the highest votes for our campaign. These maps show a footprint of organizing with the biggest areas of support being in downtown Newark, where we canvassed, fliered and postered, and South Orange-Maplewood where both we and SOMA Action campaigned around the issue of ending Essex’s contract with ICE. There was a smaller area of support in Bloomfield-Belleville, where we mainly postered. The more people knew about us, the higher the support. In the areas where we campaigned the most, support averaged about 7.5%, triple the overall vote percentage.
Second, the maps show that we got support from all three main ethnic groups in the County: Latino in East Newark and Bloomfield-Belleville, African–American in Central Newark and non-Latino “white” in Maplewood-South Orange.
In one-fifth of the election districts, we out-polled the Republican candidate.
Since we got very little media coverage (blacked out by the Star-Ledger and the New York Times) it is clear that there is no district where everyone knew about our effort. So in the key towns of Newark, South Orange-Maplewood and Bloomfield-Belleville, with almost 40% of the county-wide vote, our support would be conservatively about 10% if we could just reach everyone.
This is real support for our program, not just opposition to Joe D. We looked at the districts were Democratic or Republican percentages were the highest, where we could expect to do the weakest, and the vote there for our campaign averaged only 1.2%, so that is an estimate of the “pure protest” vote against Joe D. Where we campaigned, where people knew what we were about, our support was far greater.
Jobs and Equal Rights for All vote concentrations in Newark: red (6-9%), orange (5-6%) and green (4-5%).
Jobs and Equal Rights for All vote concentrations outside Newark: red (6-9%), orange (5-6%), green (4-5%). Concentrations in South Orange-Maplewood (bottom) and Bloomfield-Belleville (top).
Overall, for a first effort by the Jobs and Equal Right for All campaign, I think this was a really encouraging result. Thanks again to all for your support!
Dear Jobs and Equal Rights for All Supporters,
Congratulations to all of you! Collectively we successfully mounted a Jobs and Equal Rights for All movement-campaign to challenge to “Deportation Joe”, Joseph DiVincenzo, for Essex County Executive. This was an important step in not only challenging Joe D but in building a real political alternative to the two parties of the billionaires. It is a step towards winning our program of Jobs, Equal Rights, and Free Public Services FOR ALL, paid for by taxing the wealth and income of the billionaires and millionaires, and ending their war machine.
Because of your efforts we garnered over 6,000 votes—6,123 to be exact— more than 2.6% of the vote. We defeated the Republicans in about 20% of the precincts in the County. In the East Ward of Newark, where we did the most outreach, in most precincts we doubled and tripled our overall county average vote percentage. We also did above average in West Orange, Maplewood and South Orange where many people—partly through the anti-Trump groups SOMA-Action and Essex Rising—had become aware of, and in some cases involved in, our campaign to shut down ICE in Essex County.
All of you helped push this movement forward through canvassing, coming out to protests, speaking at city council and freeholder meetings, sending texts, posting on social media, speaking with friends and strangers alike, donating, and voting for the Jobs and Equal Rights for All campaign.
This impressive showing was in the face of the corporate press refusing, for the most part, to cover our campaign. The Star Ledger reneged on an offer to publish a guest editorial on our campaign. In addition, we went up against the well-funded, entrenched, Democratic Party, and their allied non-profits and trade union bureaucrats, who were all pushing hard the “Fight Trump by voting Democrat” line, as did many leading influential local activists. Finally, most Socialist groups did not endorse nor did Sanders’ Our Revolution outfit.
Nationally, the Democrats recaptured the House and in New Jersey the Democrats now control all but one of the state’s congressional districts. But, as we know, the Democrats will betray the expectations and hopes of their base. Already, the new crop of Democrats are backing off their promises of Abolishing ICE. We can expect betrayals in other areas as well.
As we emphasized throughout the campaign, the only way we can make advances is building a movement fighting for what we want. This includes having a democratically-controlled electoral arm of the movement to push forward our demands.
We will be holding a forum in the near future to discuss the campaign and how we can run in 2019 an entire slate of of Jobs, Equal Rights and Free Public Services for All movement-campaign candidates for the NJ Assembly. Join Us!
The struggle continues,
WE DEMAND THAT THE ESSEX COUNTY ICE CONCENTRATION CAMP BE IMMEDIATELY AND PERMANENTLY CLOSED
All who live here, regardless of national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation or gender, have equal rights: they have the right to quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy, and they have the right to good jobs at good wages.
ALL WHO LIVE HERE HAVE EQUAL RIGHTS
End all deportations, end all detentions, end all violations of due process rights, end all limits on the right to vote, to unionize, to organize and to strike. Freedom of movement for all.
ALL WHO LIVE HERE HAVE THE RIGHT TO QUALITY FREE EDUCATION, HEALTH CARE, TRANSPORTATION, HOUSING, AND CLEAN ENERGY
We will not be pitted against each other to fight for a share of inadequate public services. The government can and must provide quality services for all, paid for by taxing the rich and corporations, slashing weapons spending and ending all US wars and occupations that force people to migrate.
ALL WHO LIVE HERE HAVE THE RIGHT TO GOOD JOBS AT GOOD WAGES
We will not be pitted against each other to fight for a share of too few, underpaid jobs. Providing quality free education, health care, transportation, housing and clean energy will also provide good jobs for all.
OUR CANDIDATE FOR ESSEX COUNTY EXECUTIVE:
JOHN JAY ARENA
Download this poster, print it out and post it on your window!
Legal-size paper works best, letter-size is OK