City ID cards for immigrants in Phoenix likely
United States, 11th October: Phoenix is planning to issue city IDs (identification cards) to undocumented immigrants living here.
As per the reports, Michael Nowakowski, City council member, had recently asked the city attorney to seek the possibility of having city ID cards for undocumented immigrants in Phoenix.
City ID cards for immigrants proposed—In response to serious concerns among Hispanics due to ‘Show me your papers’ provision of SB 1070, Nowakowski has sought on the need for some form of ID for undocumented immigrants living in Phoenix.
Hispanic community in Phoenix have been worried that the Arizona immigration’s ‘show me your papers’ provision will inhibit crime victims or crime witnesses from coming forward. And this would undoubtedly lead to majority of crimes in the city go unreported.
IDs for increased safety of Phoenix immigrants---The top priority for the city should be to ensure safety and security of people coming forward to offer clues regarding crimes.
And this is only possible if people have some personal identification document showing their residential status, states the memorandum by Nowakowski. When immigrants call police officials, they must feel safe, Councilman Nowakowski adds.
He further maintains in the 2nd October dated memo that the idea of having city ID cards for immigrants in Phoenix will offer them a valid state ID. However, for getting ID cards, immigrants must have either a foreign identification or a Mexican Matricula card.
Limited identity options for undocumented immigrants—Options of proving their identity with the police officials are quite limited for undocumented immigrants stopped for any offense including traffic violation, informs Nowakowski.
They can’t be issued state ID cards. And undocumented immigrants are barred from getting a driver’s license in Arizona.
Moreover, foreign identity documents like Mexican Matricula card by the government of Mexico are not deemed to be valid ID documents by Phoenix police officials because they don’t show biometric details like weight, height of the individual visible only through a special scanner, informs Nowakowski.
A pro-immigrant activist Salvador Reza however is not convinced with the idea of city ID cards for undocumented immigrants in Phoenix since he feels they will fail to offer protection.
Moreover, a city ID card will also not help immigrants gain a driver’s license from Arizona, he maintained.