Another Voice: Driver’s License Should Be Available to All Immigrants

May 18, 2017. Jennifer R. Guzmán argues that undocumented immigrants, who we rely on for our dairy, fruits and vegetables, are struggling to fulfill their basic needs because they are prevented from obtaining a driver’s licenses and are overcharged for rides to work, the grocery store and other places. She goes on to discuss the benefits to all if the New York State Assembly Bill A4050 is passed. She cites FPI’s and New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer’s reports in order to make this case.

This proposed law would benefit all New Yorkers. According to impact reports by the Fiscal Policy Institute and New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer, restoring access to licenses will boost state and local economies. License and vehicle registration fees will contribute to county governments and transportation infrastructure. And an increase in licensed drivers will likely lower insurance premiums for everyone. The average cost of auto insurance is $17.22 lower in states where undocumented residents can drive.

We rely on them for the dairy, fruits and vegetables we eat every day. Immigrant farmworkers shop in our businesses and belong to our churches. Their children are classmates with our children.

There are concrete benefits associated with Assembly Bill A4050, but more importantly, we owe this gesture of decency to our undocumented neighbors. We should urge our elected officials to pass this legislation.

Here is the link to The Buffalo News.