Lakewood Township Warnings End, Zero Tolerance Begins in Downtown Today With $250 Summonses


lakewood-muster-zoneStarting today, the Lakewood, NJ, Township Police Department will be giving out $250.00 summonses to anyone-pedestrian or motorist-who solicits the services of a day laborer outside of the Township designated ESA (Employment Services Area), located in the municipal parking lot between First and Second streets.

According to Lakewood Police Chief Robert Lawson, ample warnings have been issued to the public since the Township passed an ordinance in February 2010, forbidding the solicitation of the services, industry or labor of people seeking employment in an area dedicated for public use, like a median, a road, or the side of a road. Those seeking employment may no longer signal their interest in being hired as well.

Mayor Steven Langert said, “The Township felt compelled to ensure the safety of pedestrians and day laborers, and keep traffic flowing in downtown Lakewood by enacting a No Solicitation of Employment Ordinance. On the other hand, we established an ESA, a safe area, for those who are seeking work.”

Recently, representatives of the day laborers who have been meeting regularly with Mayor Langert and Chief Lawson urged him and the police chief to enact stricter enforcement of the ordinance forbidding picking up laborers outside of the ESA.

Mayor Langert said, “This is a request straight from the day laborers. Their feelings are that those who do comply with the Township ordinance by going to the ESA are losing out because someone looking for a day laborer will stop anywhere in the downtown area to pick up someone and never make it to the ESA. In order to show good faith on their end, the representatives of the day laborers have requested very strict enforcement by Township officials.”

Chief Lawson says, “Tomorrow morning, if you violate the ordinance whether you are a day laborer or a contractor, you will be receiving a township summons.”

{Noam Newscenter}