At least 16 demonstrations will be held in New Jersey on Saturday to protest President Donald Trump's "zero tolerance" policy on illegal border crossings, particularly the administration's policy of separating children from their parents at the border.

These protests are part of a national movement, which is expected to include more than 600 protests across the country. According to Elizabeth Meyer, one of the organizers of the Families Belong Together New Jersey March, tens of thousands of people are expected to participate in New Jersey’s demonstrations, with about 5,000 expected to attend the Newark protest alone.

See a list of the protest locations below.

The most recent development in this conflict was a federal judge's order Tuesday that U.S. border authorities must reunite separated families within 30 days.

In response, a spokesperson from the Justice Department said that the decision "makes it even more imperative that Congress finally act to give federal law enforcement the ability to simultaneously enforce the law and keep families together."

"Without this action by Congress, lawlessness at the border will continue, which will only lead to predictable results — more heroin and fentanyl pushed by Mexican cartels plaguing our communities, a surge in MS-13 gang members, and an increase in the number of human trafficking prosecutions."

Meyer said the protest’s goal is to “elevate the voices of people who have been directly impacted by what is essentially the criminalization of immigration going on right now.”

An executive order reversed the policy last week, but Meyer says the protesters hope to bring attention to the executive order’s limits.

“Even though the executive order seemingly ends the separation of families, what it’s not doing is allowing these families to be in their communities together, which is really where they belong rather than kept in cages. I think there is a lot more that the executive order does to actually enforce the zero tolerance policy. Yes, it is allowing children to stay with their parents, but those families are still essentially locked up in cages,” Meyer said.

She added that protesters will also be “calling on members of Congress to take action to prevent separation of families and abolish ICE.”

Meyer said the abolition of ICE would be particularly important in New Jersey, because “here in New Jersey, ICE arrests are increasing at a rapid rate. It’s outpacing the national average. It’s really terrorizing communities. And we’re calling on our state elected officials as well to stand up and protect immigrant families in New Jersey, by ensuring that our state doesn’t aid in the mass deportation efforts of the Trump administration, that all immigrants have access to legal counsel, so they can also live, thrive and study safely in New Jersey.”

Meyer said U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., will speak at the Newark event. New Jersey first lady Tammy Murphy also will participate, she said.

“There’ll be everyone from children to older folks there delivering their thoughts and their experiences in both English and Spanish […] to break down walls and create understanding between folks,” she said.

The American Civil Liberties Union, Greenpeace, NARAL Pro-Choice America, National Education Association, YWCA and the Women's March organization will also be participating in the protests.

Protests in New Jersey

Asbury Park







Glen Ridge

Glen Rock


New Brunswick



Red Bank



Toms River

Associated Press contributed to this article.

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