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Jersey City becomes a sanctuary city

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JERSEY CITY — Surrounded by members of the City Council and immigration advocates on Feb. 3, Mayor Steven M. Fulop signed an executive order that gave legal teeth to Jersey City’s previous sanctuary city status.
Although there is technically no legal definition of a “sanctuary city” certain towns have gone on the record in the last few decades as saying they won’t ask their police to cooperate with federal Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in detaining undocumented persons, unless they are involved in serious crime.
In issuing an executive order, Fulop laid out specifically how much cooperation the city would give federal immigration authorities, and prohibited all city employees and agencies from cooperating with federal authorities to identify immigrants — unless they have a court order.
“Jersey City has a long tradition of welcoming new immigrants to our country as the Golden Door to America and that is not going to change,” said Fulop, who served in the marines after Sept. 11, 2001.
The executive order established a firm policy prevented city resources from being used on the enforcement of federal immigration law, which will likely be used as a model for other cities in New Jersey and the nation, local officials said.
The 10-page executive order will ensure the ongoing public safety for immigrants and all residents of Jersey City, Fulop said, noting that when local enforcement unduly cooperates with U.S. Immigration and Customers Enforcement, (ICE) immigrants are less likely to report crimes, act as witnesses in criminal investigations and prosecutions, and provide intelligence to law enforcement, which is especially harmful where the victim of the crime in an immigrant.

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