Mayor John DeStefano Jr., an outspoken advocate for immigration reform, took on the issue seven years ago by offering undocumented immigrants resident identification cards and released a statement in support of the legislation.
“Like the municipal ID, granting immigrants driver licenses regardless of immigration status is good policy. Drivers’ licenses will reduce the number of uninsured motorists on the road and will establish training and testing standards to ensure driver safety. Moreover, like the Elm City ID, drivers’ licenses can help connect immigrants with banking services to help reduce street crime, increase the reporting of crime and help to create a sense of community identity,” DeStefano said in a statement.
More than 10,000 cards have been issued since the program’s inception and the ID cards have gone a long way in strengthening relationships between residents and the city’s police department, DeStefano said in March.