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Union County Announces Commemoration of World AIDS Day – Remember and Commit: 35 Years of Progress

In commemoration of the 35th anniversary of World AIDS Day, The Union County Board of County Commissioners, alongside RWJ Barnabas Health are proud to present “World AIDS Day – Remember and Commit,” an event dedicated to advocating for progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS on December 1st at the Warinanco Sports Center.

“We believe that by coming together as a community, we can make a significant impact in the fight against HIV/AIDS,” said Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “World AIDS Day is an opportunity for us to reflect on the progress made, honor those we have lost, and renew our commitment to a future where HIV/AIDS is no longer a threat. Join us on December 1st as we unite in solidarity, remember the journey, and commit to creating a world free from the impact of HIV/AIDS.”

The event will run from 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. on December 1st. Keynote speaker Yolanda Frazier, a prominent advocate and expert in the field, will share her insights and experiences. Yolanda serves as Project Manager at the Family Treatment Center, which provides specialized care and treatment for individuals and families infected and affected by HIV or AIDS. She is also the co-founder of the Kiss & Tell Innovative Initiative to encourage conversations about HIV testing, STI screening, risk factors, and PrEP education.

Participants are encouraged to pre-register for the event, although registration is not mandatory. As part of our commitment to community health, the event will also include:

  • HIV/Hepatitis C Testing: Confidential and accessible testing services will be available onsite.
  • Education and Counseling for PReP: Dedicated professionals will be on hand to provide education and counseling regarding Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PReP) and treatment options.
  • Flu Shots: The Union County Office of Health Management will offer flu shots.

For more information or to pre-register, visit To learn more about the services offered by the Union County Office of Health Management, visit

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Union County Announces Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive to Brighten the Holidays for Families in Need

The Union County Board of County Commissioners would like to announce “Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive” collecting new toys and coats to spread joy and happiness throughout the community this holiday season for those Union County neighbors in need.

This heartwarming initiative aims to collect new toys and coats for boys and girls ranging in age from newborn to 16 years old. The collected toys and coats will be distributed to Union County families who have already been identified, who are facing challenging circumstances during this festive time of year.

“Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive invites everyone in the community to participate and contribute to making the holiday season special for children of all ages,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “Every child deserves to experience the joy of the holiday season, and we invite our residents and businesses to join us in making that possible. Your generous donations will bring smiles to the faces of countless children and their families.”

To make participation in the toy and coat drive as convenient as possible, drop-off bins will be located at various locations throughout Union County, ensuring that individuals and organizations have easy access to donate. The drop-off locations include:

  • Union County Administration Building, 10 Elizabethtown Plaza, Elizabeth
  • Union County Social Services, 342 Westminster Avenue, Elizabeth
  • Union County Public Safety Building, 300 North Avenue East, Westfield
  • Union County Engineering Building, 2325 South Avenue, Scotch Plains

For suggestions on toys, individuals can visit and select a toy from our Wish List and deliver it to any of the bins or send to the shipping address. If you would like to get items shipped from anywhere else, please send to:

The County of Union
Attn: Samantha Perez
6th Floor 10 Elizabethtown Plaza
Elizabeth, NJ 07207

The drive will run from November 27, 2023 to December 18th allowing ample time for people to drop off their new, unwrapped toys and coats.

For more information about the Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive or to donate toys that are not on the list, please visit or contact Samantha Perez-Gora at 908-527-4182.

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2023 Diwali Celebration

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Veterans Day

On behalf of the Union County Board of County Commissioners, on this Veterans Day, we extend our deepest gratitude to the brave men and women who have served in defense of our nation. Your sacrifice and commitment has safeguarded our freedoms, and we honor your invaluable contributions. Thank you for your service.

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Union County to Hold Emergency Holiday Food Distributions on November 18th & December 17th

A drive-thru event in Union to provide residents with food for the Holidays

The Union County Board of County Commissioners are announcing two emergency food distribution events that will take place on Saturday, November 18, and Sunday, December 17, beginning at 8:00 a.m. at the campus of Kean University, located at 1000 Morris Avenue in Union Township.

“With the holiday season fast approaching, the Commissioner Board and the County of Union are hosting these food distribution events, offering crucial support to residents facing financial challenges,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados, who also serves as Liaison to the Human Services Advisory Board. “Our goal is to alleviate the burden of meal expenses, ensuring that hunger does not affect the holiday experience for any of our Union County residents and their families. We extend our heartfelt appreciation to the dedicated volunteers and staff, who have tirelessly served our community for over three years, and have continued to do so throughout various community focused programs that include a focus on our commitment to eliminating holiday hunger.”

This event operates on a first-come, first-served basis, and will take place rain or shine. Participants must have proof of NJ residency with them. The first 2,000 residents will receive a special holiday food box with produce and trimmings.

Participants are reminded to clear a space in their trunk or cargo area. Event staff will load the food into their vehicle. Boxes may include perishable items, so please make sure all fresh produce and items with a limited shelf life are refrigerated.

For more information about the Community Food Bank of New Jersey, or to find other food distribution locations, please visit or text FINDFOOD to 908-224-7776.

For updates on all Union County COVID-19 services, please visit General information about COVID-19 is available through the New Jersey Department of Health at

The County of Union would like to thank Village Super Market and Gargiulo Produce, who have been continued partners over the last three years. To learn more about Village Super Market, visit: To learn more about Gargiulo Produce, visit:

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Union County Announces FREE Arts for ALL Abilities (AAA) Program

The Union County Board of County Commissioners, in conjunction with the Union County Office for Persons with Disabilities & Special Needs, are proud to announce a new Arts for ALL Abilities (AAA) program in response to the growing need for increased inclusivity and artistic expression for persons with disabilities, as part of Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados’ “Equity and Inclusion” initiatives, through his 2023 Chairman’s theme of “Building a Stronger Union County.”

“On behalf of the Union County Board of County Commissioners, I am happy to present this free transformative program, which aims to provide a platform for County residents with disabilities to showcase their artistic talents, while also fostering a more inclusive and supportive community for all abilities,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “Art knows no boundaries and I believe that every dollar invested in the arts produces a significant return in measurable and immeasurable ways. This is a great opportunity for our residents to express themselves as we create a canvas of inclusivity, where differences become strengths and art becomes a universal language. I encourage anyone wishing to participate to register today.”

According to the Rutgers University Disability Profile, Union County is home to over 50,000 residents living with disabilities, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that persons with disabilities are significantly more likely to experience mental distress. Arts for ALL Abilities is a response to these challenges and aims to bring art into the lives of persons with disabilities, offering them a chance to express themselves, learn new skills, and connect with their communities.

Classes are free but pre-registration is a requirement as space is limited per session. To register for a session, please visit  Sessions will be held in November and December with the following schedule:

Wednesday, November 15th: 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
PROCEED Family Success Center
1122 East Grand Street, Elizabeth
Family Canvas – Thanksgiving Theme (All ages)

Monday, November 27th: 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
2nd Street Youth Center Family Success Center
200 Plainfield Avenue, Plainfield
Children – Abstract Painting (Under 14)

Tuesday, November 28th: 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
2nd Street Youth Center, Family Success Center
200 Plainfield Avenue, Plainfield
Family Canvas – Christmas Theme (All ages)

Monday, December 4th: 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
PROCEED Family Success Center, Elizabeth
1122 East Grand Street, Elizabeth
Children – Canvas Winter Wonderland (Under 14)

Monday, December 11th: 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Hillside High School – Family Success Center
1100 Woodruff Avenue, Hillside
Adults – Pour Paint (15 and up)

Monday, December 18th: 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Hillside High School – Family Success Center
1100 Woodruff Avenue, Hillside
Adults – Abstract Painting (15 and up)

For more information on this program and/or about any other special needs programs hosted by Union County, visit, or contact the Office for Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs at (908) 527-4807 or email

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News12 Interview featuring County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi regarding the 2023 General Election

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Union County Continues Scrap Metal Recycling events with Final Events for the Season on Thursday, November 2nd & Saturday, November 18th

The Union County Board of County Commissioners are happy to inform residents that Union County’s free scrap metal recycling drop-off program will continue in November. These will be the last two events for 2023.  A wide variety of metal goods, from household appliances to air conditioners to tire rims, and railings, are accepted at two countywide collection sites in Cranford and Rahway.  This program runs every year from April to November.

“Closing the year with our continued commitment to sustainability, these events offer a convenient avenue for our community to responsibly dispose of items,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “We invite you to participate in the last two events of the year, as we continue our commitment to responsible resource management and environmental preservation.”

Scrap metal drop-off will be accepted Thursday, November 2nd and Saturday, November 18th from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at two drop-off centers:

  • Cranford:  Emergency Services Building, 151 Kenilworth Boulevard
  • Rahway: Rahway River Park (follow Park Drive, Rahway off St. Georges Avenue to service yard across from swimming pool)

Scrap metal from residents in any Union County municipality may be brought to either of these sites. Residents must remain in their vehicles at all times.  Materials should be placed in trunk, cargo area or truck bed and be easily accessible to staff to remove from vehicle.

Acceptable items for recycling include air conditioners, aluminum scrap, aluminum siding, bicycles, brass, copper, dishwashers, electric fans, fencing (chain/wire), freezers, gutters, irons, lawn furniture, metal cabinets, metal sheds, microwaves, railings, refrigerators, stoves, tire rims, toasters, washers and dryers, window frames (no glass), and wire hangers.

Since these are the last two scrap metal events 2023, please call the Bureau of Recycling and Planning for other options during the off-season. 

To receive schedule alerts, and to stay up to date with Union County and local recycling programs, download the free Recycle Coach mobile app.

For more information, upcoming dates and directions to all Union County recycling programs and locations, visit the Bureau of Recycling and Planning website at or call the Union County Recycling Hotline at 908-654-9889.

Quick links to all Union County environmental programs and activities are available at The Green Connection,

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Union County Officially Rolls Out the Blue Envelope Program across all 21 Municipalities

The Union County Board of County Commissioners are proud to announce the full rollout of the Blue Envelope Program, as part of Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados’ “Equity and Inclusion” initiatives, through his 2023 Chairman’s theme of “Building a Stronger Union County,” in partnership with the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, Sheriff’s Department, the County Police Department, and the Union County Police Chief’s Association. These initiatives are geared towards fostering inclusivity and promoting safer interactions between law enforcement officers and individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

“In a collaborative effort, all 21 municipal and county law enforcement agencies have come together to champion the Blue Envelope Program, a symbol of our commitment to enhancing safety, inclusivity, and understanding for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “We are committed to the safety of our communities, and this is just another significant step forward in the right direction.”

The Blue Envelope Program is accessible to all Union County residents on the Autism Spectrum. Residents can obtain a Blue Envelope at their local police departments throughout the county.

“Each of these organizations recognized the significance of this initiative and swiftly united to get to work on this program,” said Union County Prosecutor William Daniel. “We take immense pride in the dedication and effort invested in the training and implementation of this program and I am looking forward to seeing its successes.”

The Blue Envelope Program introduces a simple yet effective tool that contains essential information for drivers with Autism Spectrum Disorder. This includes a copy of their driver’s license, vehicle registration, insurance details, and an emergency contact card. Additionally, the envelope provides clear instructions to drivers on how to navigate a traffic stop and interact with law enforcement officers in a manner that promotes clarity and safety.

Key features of the Blue Envelope Program include:

  • Specialized Training: Every officer in Union County, including local officers in all 21 municipalities, will undergo specialized training to develop a deeper understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder and the best practices for engaging with individuals during traffic stops.
  • Communication Facilitation: Drivers with Autism Spectrum Disorder can present the blue envelope to the officer upon being stopped, allowing officers to quickly recognize the situation and adapt their approach accordingly.
  • Essential Information: The envelope includes guidance for officers to simplify requests and minimize the risk of misunderstandings or potential escalation. Additionally, officers are advised to contact the person listed on the emergency contact card for assistance if needed.
  • Verbal or Nonverbal Indication: A checked-off box on the envelope indicates whether the driver is verbal or nonverbal, which aids officers in communicating effectively.

“Every single police department in Union County is proud to be a part of this initiative,” said Elizabeth Police Chief Giacomo Sacca and President of the Union County Police Chief’s Association.  “Our officers have undergone thorough briefings and trainings to ensure they are well-versed in the proper protocols, and they are eager to put their training into action.”

For additional updates and details about the Blue Envelope Program and other initiatives under Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados’ “Equity & Inclusion” initiatives, please visit

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Voting Security on Election Night in Union County

Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi has released a new video on security measures for election tabulation that occurs at the close of the polls on Election Day.  The video is available on the home page of, in English and Spanish.

“Transparency of the election is of paramount importance,” Clerk Rajoppi said.  “In an effort to better inform our voters on the security, integrity, and chain of custody in the operation, we produced an explanatory video of the step by step process.  I want voters to know that I care as much about their vote as they do and am committed to protecting it.”

Union County implements strict security measures as Election Day nears to ensure the integrity of the voting process. After polling stations close, USB drives with ballot data are collected, securely transported by sheriff officers to tabulating sites, and the data is recorded. All ballots are carefully counted, including vote-by-mail, emergency, and provisional ballots. Ballots dropped off at designated locations are collected daily and counted after polls close. These ballots are securely stored at the Board of Elections.

To track preliminary results on Election Night, residents can visit the County Clerk website at, or download the Union County Votes app for free. Results will be updated throughout the night. The official certification of results takes place 15 days after Election Day.

For more information about election security measures, contact the Elections Division at 908-527-4996 or Additional videos, including instructions on how to vote by mail, can be found on