fbpx
Redefining public defense.

The Bronx Defenders In the News

Quartz: Why ICE’s coronavirus response is so dangerous

“These recent events make me think of people like Ousman Darboe, a longtime Bronx, New York resident, husband, and father, currently jailed at Bergen County Jail, whom ICE has kept locked up in civil immigration confinement since 2017. ICE claims he’s a public safety risk, even after governor Andrew Cuomo granted a pardon of his sole criminal conviction,…

LexBlog: NYC Public Defenders Issue Statement Condemning ICE Inaction on Coronavirus Threat at Detention Centers

(NEW YORK, NY) – The Legal Aid Society, Brooklyn Defender Services, and The Bronx Defenders – New York City’s defender organizations providing free legal in representation to detained immigrants through the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP) – today released the following statement in response to news of the first ICE detainee testing positive for…

The Appeal: ‘Is My Life Not As Valuable As Yours?’ Immigration Judges Want All Courts Shut Down As Coronavirus Cases Soar

“The Trump administration’s hardline immigration policies are intersecting with a highly contagious disease at a time when New York State leads the nation with at least 20,875 confirmed coronavirus cases. In New York on Friday, Attorney General Letitia James joined Bitta Mostofi, New York City’s commissioner of Immigrant Affairs, in calling for a shutdown of…

Gay City News: Advocates Demand Help for Vulnerable Prisoners, Homeless Folks

“There is also attention on the plight of individuals in custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which was already tied to poor living conditions before the coronavirus outbreak. The Bronx Defenders and the Legal Aid Society on March 23 filed for a temporary restraining order intended to bring about the release of ICE clients who…

Patch: Stuck In Jail During A Pandemic: Coronavirus Hits NJ Prisons

“According to the groups – The Legal Aid Society, Brooklyn Defender Services and The Bronx Defenders – the inmates are rallying against “egregious conditions” and inaction by ICE to prevent the spread of COVID-19. “Among reports of egregious conditions, we have heard that ICE is not responding to medical sick calls and that there are…

Vice: 2 Coronavirus Cases Confirmed in New Jersey Prison with ICE Detainees

“The news comes amid reports of a growing number of COVID-19 cases inside correctional facilities in the New York City area. At least 38 people on Rikers Island — both inmates and employees — have tested positive for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. ICE detainees at the Hudson County jail and two other…

The New York Times: ‘A Storm Is Coming’: Fears of an Inmate Epidemic as the Virus Spreads in the Jails

“Public defenders and advocates for inmates have called for sending home all inmates with pre-existing medical conditions, those over 50 and anyone jailed for a parole violation. “It is a ticking time bomb,” said Justine Olderman, executive director of the Bronx Defenders. “We’re looking for bold action and leadership.” On Saturday, the Board of Correction,…

Vice: Immigrants Are Now on Hunger Strike in 3 ICE Detention Centers Over Coronavirus Fears

“Attorneys who represent detainees at the Hudson and Essex County facilities say inmates are reporting threats and intimidation by guards when they’re heard discussing conditions on the phone. Because detention centers across the country have already canceled in-person visits from family and attorneys as a precautionary measure, this means detainees are increasingly isolated and in…

Business Insider: A Rikers Island inmate contracted coronavirus. Experts say jails are at high risk for an outbreak.

Inmates there and around New York City have lodged complaints that the jails lack “basic sanitation measures,” according to the Legal Aid Society. “There are broken sinks, there’s no hand sanitizer, people don’t have access to soap,” Justine Olderman, executive director of Bronx Defenders, told The Intercept. “And at a time we’re all being asked to…

The Appeal: ICE Detainees Launch Hunger Strike Over Coronavirus Fears

The organizers are attempting to spread the strike through the whole facility, including to workers at the jail. “We are asking our fellow brothers in ICE [custody] to join us. We are also asking the kitchen workers that work in the main kitchen downstairs to not go to work,” the strikers said. “There is power…

New York Magazine: Will Rikers Island Free Inmates Because of the Coronavirus?

“The only way we can possibly keep incarcerated people safe is to release them,” said Justine Olderman, executive director of the Bronx Defenders. “The next best thing is to drastically reduce the number of people being held. Neither of those things are being done right now. As public defenders, what we’re actually seeing happen is…

Yahoo: ICE Arrests Need To Stop NOW To Prevent The Spread Of Coronavirus

Thankfully, there are some courageous lawyers in New York City who are fighting to change this dangerous status quo. They join the ranks of prominent organizations like the ACLU who filed suit against ICE on Monday for the release of nine detainees held at a Washington state detention center who are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19. This current…

HipLatina: ICE Is Bringing Kids to NYC Despite Coronavirus Outbreak

The coronavirus outbreak has closed schools, businesses, and has forced many to remain at home. With so many precautions underway, several organizations allege that ICE is handling undocumented people as if it was business as usual.  NSC learned ICE was transporting 6 minors from Dallas to NY during #COVIDー19 We went to the airport to witness their…

The Baffler: The Deserving Migrant

The New York Immigrant Family Unity Project ensures that everyone in ICE custody in New York City is guaranteed access to an attorney, regardless of their criminal legal status. “We never wanted to play into the rhetoric of the ‘good, deserving’ immigrant versus the less deserving person who may have had contact with the criminal legal system,”…

The Appeal: Justice In America Episode 23: Criminalizing Mothers

Josie Duffy Rice and guest co-host Zak Cheney-Rice talk with Emma Ketteringham, the managing director of the Bronx Defenders Family Defense Practice, about the relationship between the criminal justice system and family court, and how together they can wreak havoc on American families. Listen to the full podcast here

Quartz: ICE changed an algorithm to prevent the release of detained immigrants

Momentarily put aside your positions on immigration policy, if you will, and consider this case of alleged algorithmic rigging. Whatever your feelings on people seeking legal status in the US, you may find cause for concern about humanity’s growing reliance on machines to determine liberty. Last week, the Bronx Defenders and New York Civil Liberties Union…

Latin Post: ICE Sued for Misconduct by New York Civil Rights Activists

The United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is going to undergo legal proceedings for the improper processing of immigrants. The migrants were supposed to stay idle and wait for their court hearings without being locked up, but ICE did otherwise. ICE is facing a lawsuit that was filed by the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU)…

Slate: How Automation Bias Encourages the Use of Flawed Algorithms

From 2013 to June 2017, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s New York Field Office determined that about 47 percent of detainees designated as “low risk” should be released while they waited for their immigration cases to be resolved, according to FOIA data obtained by the New York Civil Liberties Union. But something changed in the…

Bronx Justice News: ICE Has Secret “No-Release” Policy for Detainees in NYC, Suit Claims

The NYCLU and Bronx Defenders sued the federal government this week, claiming ICE is unlawfully keeping thousands of New Yorkers jailed for non-criminal immigration offenses. Nearly everyone ICE apprehended over the last three years remains in lockup, the lawsuit alleges, despite a federal law mandating individualized custody determinations be made by ICE officials within 48 hours…