Joint Statement From NYIFUP Legal Providers on Reports of Heat-Related Illnesses Following Air Conditioning Malfunction at ICE Bergen County Jail

The Legal Aid Society, Brooklyn Defender Services, and The Bronx Defenders – New York City’s defender organizations providing free legal representation through the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP) to detained immigrants with pending cases at the Varick Street Immigration Court – released the following joint statement today in response to reports of heat-related illnesses as air conditioning malfunctioned at Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Bergen County Jail in New Jersey:

"We are deeply alarmed that our clients have been exposed to potential heat-related illnesses as a result of basic facility failures on a 90-degree day. This is another example of the rapidly deteriorating conditions at Bergen County Jail and lays bare the recklessness of ICE precipitating public health crises in the name of detaining as many immigrants as possible. Hundreds of people detained at Bergen can and should be released to their families to complete their cases."