States across the country are proposing in-state college tuition rates for undocumented students, a move mirrored by Congress' proposed DREAM Act, which was re-introduced at the federal level on March 25th. Currently ten states allow undocumented immigrants to enroll in state colleges and universities under the cheaper in-state tuition rate category: California, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and Washington. In recent years, anti-immigrant legislators sought to modify or repeal laws providing access to in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants, though they've failed each time. This session, those efforts failed again in Utah and Nebraska. Kansas didn't even bring up repealing it.
only a few states still issue drivers licenses to undocumented immigrants,
progressive leaders need to emphasize that many top law enforcement officials are on record supporting such drivers
license identification programs as a way to bring undocumented immigrants out
of the shadows, and better track state residents for law enforcement purposes.
do not require proof of legal status to obtain a driver license: Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, Utah, and Washington,
with none of them suffering ill effects to public safety.
are a number of models for removing bars to undocumented immigrants receiving
New Jersey A2607 would permit
the state to issue driving privilege cards, with the same privileges and
legal responsibilities of a basic driver's license, to persons who cannot
prove ID or lawful presence in the country.
California SB 60 would require
compliance with the REAL ID Act of 2005, but would also require the
Department of Motor Vehicles to issue a driver's license that permits
driving, and is not acceptable by a federal agency for federal identification
or for any other official purpose, to an applicant who does not provide
valid documentary evidence of lawful status under the federal
Americans are concerned about lost privacy in all aspects of our lives, so
another approach is to combine licensing laws for immigrants with a more
general policy denying the DMV the right to inquire about a wide range of
personal information, from legal status to gender orientation, as long as the
person can produce some reasonable identification.