Social Justice

Bill would require state documents to be translated into 15 languages

BY: - March 30, 2022

More than 150 languages are spoken in homes across New Jersey, one of the most diverse states in the country. Yet, important state documents and forms are usually required to be printed in only one language: English. A new bill seeks to increase that number to 15 languages, a move its supporters say would encourage […]

N.J. commission says state isn’t ready to start sales of recreational weed

BY: - March 24, 2022

The commission overseeing the state’s cannabis industry on Thursday gave conditional approval to dozens of potential weed growers and labs, but did not set dates for the start of recreational marijuana sales. The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission also halted a move to allow the existing eight medical marijuana dispensaries to start selling recreational weed […]

Low-income families in N.J. least likely to have claimed expanded child tax credit, study finds

BY: - March 17, 2022

The expanded child tax credit was a lifeline to low-income families, who spent the majority of the benefit on necessities like food, clothing, rent, and utilities, according to a new report by the Rutgers Center for Women and Work and the New Jersey State Policy Lab. And though nearly every household with children qualified for some form […]

Court ruling on police records a win for transparency, advocates say

BY: - March 14, 2022

Public officials must release police disciplinary records in New Jersey when the public’s interest in them outweighs an officer’s confidentiality concerns, the state’s top court ruled Monday. Reformers, who have been fighting to open police records for years to increase accountability for misconduct, hailed the decision as a significant win for transparency. New Jersey Supreme […]

Bill would OK civil forfeiture funds for minority recruitment, training

BY: - March 14, 2022

A bill now before the New Jersey Legislature would allow law enforcement agencies to spend civil forfeiture funds on diversity training for officers, minority recruitment, and community outreach. The legislation has raised eyebrows among criminal justice reformers, who have long lambasted civil forfeiture as a problematic police practice that disproportionately impacts low-income communities of color. “These are […]

Bill would require N.J schools to accept donations for school lunches

BY: - March 10, 2022

New Jersey schools would be required to establish “school meal funds” to help students buy food in school or to pay down a student’s lunch debt under a bill a Senate committee will hear Thursday. Under the measure (S1661), money from the fund would be used only to help pay for students’ breakfasts or lunches, […]

Murphy to announce health care for undocumented children in budget address

BY: - March 8, 2022

Gov. Phil Murphy is expected to announce an $11 million plan to provide health care for thousands of undocumented children in his budget address Tuesday afternoon, the New Jersey Monitor has learned.  The initiative would be an expansion of his “cover all kids” pledge, which he made in his budget speech last year. More than […]

N.J. comptroller’s office to examine police accountability statewide

BY: - March 7, 2022

The Office of the State Comptroller is launching a new project aimed at ferreting out fraud, misconduct, waste, and abuse in law enforcement agencies statewide. The goal is to uncover systemic problems that can cost taxpayers a bundle when people sue police departments for civil rights violations or other wrongdoing. Researchers also will identify inefficiencies […]

N.J. cannabis panel mulls how to spend proceeds from recreational weed

BY: - March 3, 2022

Expungement clinics. School buses. Wheelchair ramps. Cannabis community centers. Training for rookie entrepreneurs. Grants and no-interest loans. The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission heard all sorts of ideas Wednesday night from 15 people during an hourlong virtual public hearing held to solicit input for how the state should spend tax revenue from the new recreational […]

Crowds race to apply for immigrant worker fund before deadline

BY: - March 1, 2022

With hours left before applications for the Excluded New Jerseyans Fund closed, dozens of people lined a sidewalk on South Warren Street in Trenton, documents in hand. One by one, they made their way to a community organizer who helped them fill out an application for their last chance at some of the millions set aside […]

Cannabis panel paves way for THC concentrate sales

BY: - February 25, 2022

No date has been set for the long-awaited launch of New Jersey’s recreational cannabis industry, but cannabis officials are already moving for dispensaries to sell a wider array of THC products.  During the Cannabis Regulatory Commission’s meeting Thursday, officials unanimously voted to pass a waiver for medical marijuana providers to produce and sell cannabis concentrates.  […]

Fears grow that Black businesses will be left out of recreational marijuana market

BY: and - February 23, 2022

Jersey City plant shop owner Shayla Cabrera has eyed the cannabis industry for years, dreaming of growing and selling her own cannabis crop in a market where sales are expected to top one billion dollars the first year. As a Black woman, Cabrera has an edge in the highly competitive race to snag the limited number of […]