The U.S. New Jersey County Attorney’s Office announced Monday that a special unit has been set up to enforce federal civil rights laws across the state.
According to U.S. Attorney General Philip Salinger, the office has done this work before. But the new department, which will bring together members of the existing civil rights unit and federal prosecutors from the criminal department of the office, will be able to better coordinate ways to protect and promote civil rights, he said.
“No one should ever be discriminated against or hated because of where they come from, how they look, who they love and how they worship,” Salinger said in an accompanying video statement. “The protection of civil rights has led to the founding of the Department of Justice, and it remains a relevant part of our mission today – especially here in New Jersey, where our diversity is one of our strongest points.”
Salinger also said he had doubled the number of civil and criminal lawyers to deal with the case – now six assistant U.S. attorneys will take over instead of three.
The department will be headed by Assistant Attorney General Michael E. Campion, who has worked in the office for nearly 15 years, according to his LinkedIn profile.
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A 50-year-old law graduate from Fordham University, Campion has served as the office’s civil rights coordinator and most recently as head of its civil rights department.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, he oversaw an investigation into the ill-treatment of prisoners at Edna Mehan Women’s Correctional Facility and the case of Joseph Sentani, landlord Elizabeth, who allegedly demanded sexual services from tenants in exchange for housing.
The champion will report directly to Salinger, the statement said.
Among other things, the department will talk to members of local communities, advocacy groups and other state and federal agencies.
Salinger said the new unit would continue past office efforts to prosecute and prosecute those who violate the civil rights of others, including cases involving discrimination, fair housing, fair credit, prisoner rights, police violations. and the right to vote.
Private citizens can report possible civil rights violations through the U.S. Attorney’s Office website or call the U.S. Attorney’s Office hotline at 855-281-3339.
Steve Janoski covers law enforcement for NorthJersey.com. To get unlimited access to the most important news about those who protect your local community, subscribe or activate your digital account today.