Here in New York, thousands of undocumented people waited in lines at Department of Motor Vehicles Monday to apply for a driver’s license — marking a major victory for immigrant rights. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Green Light Law in June, which allows people to apply for a driver’s license using alternative forms of identification, instead of providing a Social Security number. Meanwhile, in the neighboring state of New Jersey, legislators also passed a bill Monday to allow undocumented people to apply for driver’s licenses, following emotional testimonies at the state Assembly last week. Among those to testify was a 9-year-old New Jersey resident named David.
David Cuautle: “We need these licenses because there’s cold weather, snow. And then, when the snow gets higher, we’re not going to be able to walk. You can call this community a 'great community' when we need licenses? Licenses can help our children go to a better — go to school and learn. Because my parents don’t have a license, that’s why I barely go to school. And I came here today because I support the licenses.”
On Monday, as New Jersey lawmakers approved the bill to grant undocumented people driver’s licenses, supporters erupted in cheers and chants of “Sí, se pudo” — “yes, we could.” New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has already said he will sign the legislation into law.