ROSELLE, NJ — Building on past initiatives to aid the borough of Roselle’s immigrant population, Roselle Mayor Christine Dansereau invited the New York General Consulate of Mexico to bring documentation services to the borough last week.
Dansereau, along with the Adelante Alliance of New Jersey, a nonprofit organization that advocates for immigrants based in Garwood, brought services to the Roselle Fire Department from May 23 to May 26, so residents could begin the process of obtaining passports, consular identification cards, birth certificates and dual citizenship. The services were open to anyone in the Tristate area.
In 2015, Roselle became one of the first municipalities in the state to issue municipal identification cards to undocumented immigrant residents, and in March of this year, Roselle became Union County’s first sanctuary city.
Dansereau told LocalSource that reaction to the initiative has been positive.
“The people are really appreciative,” Dansereau said in a recent phone interview.
“This is helping them tremendously to have the information they need. They have all the computers and technology set up, as well as attorneys to give the right information and to help process the papers.”
According to Dansereau, residents have been reaching out to her since the borough issued municipal ID cards.
“This is helping create the solution and helping to deal with problems regarding assimilation,” Dansereau said. “We support their freedom and their desire not to be marginalized,” she said of the immigrant population. “They seek guidance and support from where they have a friendly environment.”
According to Karla Quionez-Ruggiero, director of Adelante Alliance, ensuring that the immigrant community has the documentation it needs is of vital importance.
“The most important thing is that the Mexican immigrants here in Roselle have passports, municipal IDs and bank accounts,” Quionez-Ruggiero told LocalSource in a recent phone interview. “They need IDs to show the police and at schools. It’s important for the Mexican community to have all these papers, that they have passports and dual nationality. We are happy to work with Christine,” she said of Dansereau. “She’s very amazing and she is helping us. The community is very happy that we have these services here.”
Dansereau lauded Quionez-Ruggiero, along with the borough’s fire and police departments.
“She did this for the community to help them with the process and any questions related to immigration issues,” Dansereau said of Quionez-Ruggiero. “The fire department and police department have worked to support this effort.”