“BLOCKADE ICE!” SAYS ESSEX COUNTY CANDIDATE

June 22, 2018
For Immediate Release
Contacts: Eric Lerner (English) elerner@igc.org 908-546-7654
Jay Arena (Spanish) contact@jaera.org 973-220-5060

Press Conference:
Saturday, June 23
2 PM
Essex County Hall of Records
465 Martin Luther King Blvd., Newark NJ

Jay Arena, Candidate for Essex County Executive, Calls for New Jersey to Join National Movement to Shut Down ICE

End All Detentions and Deportations!
Jobs and Equal Rights for ALL!

Jay Arena, candidate of the Jobs and Equal Rights for All campaign for Essex County Executive, will hold a Saturday press conference to call for a blockade of the Immigrant and Customs Enforcement (ICE) concentration camps in Essex County and across New Jersey and the country. The ongoing blockade of ICE operations in Portland, Oregon organized by local activists should be replicated in Essex County and across the United States.

“During World War II the US government was able to round up people of Japanese descent and place them in concentration camps because the American people failed to denounce and organize to stop that crime,” argues Arena, an Associate Professor of Sociology at the College of Staten Island who is challenging the four-term incumbent Joseph DiVincenzo. “We can’t again stand by, we must take direct action now to shut down the internment camps at the border and everywhere, including right here in Essex County. Furthermore, we demand no individual, government, or business provide any support to ICE. Silence in the face of the atrocities is consent,” he emphasizes.

Donald Trump’s new executive order still means those who cross the US border seeking refuge will be imprisoned, children and adult alike. Furthermore, the new order does nothing to reunite the over 1,000 children who were taken literally from the arms of their mothers and fathers and imprisoned under Trump and Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Session’s cruel directive.

Every day hundreds of families are broken up by the deportation of fathers, mothers, sisters and brothers. Notorious examples include Pablo Villavicencio, the Brooklyn Pizza Deliveryman and married father of two children, who ICE arrested three weeks ago and dragged to the Hudson County-run ICE concentration camp. Jean Montrevil, an immigrant rights activist, successful small businessman, and father of four, was arrested in January by ICE after dropping his children off at school in Queens, NY. He was then imprisoned at Joe D’s Newark ICE concentration camp and subsequently deported to Haiti where he had not lived for decades.

“Immigrants are not our enemies,” Arena emphasizes. “The Billionaire class, not immigrant workers, have destroyed our jobs, run down our public services, poisoned our environment, and robbed the national treasury through endless wars.”

In contrast to the elite politics of divide and rule, Arena’s campaign calls for uniting all working class people–immigrants and native born, people of all genders, races, and nationalities—to build the world we want and need. The campaign’s three-point platform calls for Equal Rights for All, Jobs for All through a mass public works program, and free public services for all. The campaign’s platform is outlined in detail below.

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.

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