The new budget, which Governor Murphy signed on Tuesday, doubles lawyer funding for immigrants jailed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Immigrants detained pending deportation or an immigration tribunal do not have the right to lawyers as criminal defendants do. While nearly all immigrants arrested by ICE in New York receive attorneys through a state-funded program, that wasn't the case in New Jersey until Murphy allocated $ 3.1 million last year. Now he's doubled that.
While that money still covers less than half of the hundreds of New Jersey residents jailed by ICE, statistics show that immigrants with lawyers are more likely to avoid deportation. Immigrant advocates said the money will hold families together and save the lives of asylum seekers.
– WNYC News is a content partner of NJ Spotlight News.