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Undocumented immigrants can now get Colorado IDs at all DMVs in the state

Previously, just three offices offered the service
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Posted at 5:18 PM, Jun 02, 2023

DENVER - Governor Jared Polis announced Friday that the state will expand DMV services for undocumented immigrants in Colorado.

In 2013, state lawmakers passed Senate Bill 251, allowing all Coloradans the opportunity to obtain a state ID or driver licenses regardless of immigration status.

“It was only available in three or four offices, and there was, like, a three month wait list,” Polis said, referring to the few DMVs that offered ID services to those who are undocumented. “We're excited to announce that every state driver's license office in the state of Colorado will offer licenses and ID cards to all Coloradans, making it easier to access these services across our state.”

Polis said expanding the service to all offices has made Colorado roads safer.

“It’s helped reduce insurance, automobile insurance rates for every Coloradan and cleared the way for 200,000 credentials to be issued to Coloradans who, because of failures in the federal government, do not have documentation,” Polis said.

Jessie Ulibarri, a former Colorado state senator who sponsored SB251, has been advocating for its expansion.

“I think most people don't think about this idea of what it means to have the freedom to move without fear. And so getting a driver's license when you're 16, it's an act of celebration. At least it was for me, this idea that I could go to a friend's house, I could drive myself to work, I could take myself to college. And for many immigrants in the state of Colorado, that wasn't a reality until 10 years ago,” Ulibarri said.

Ulibarri said at a time when lawmakers are blocking legislation in other states that would allow undocumented immigrants to get driver licenses, he’s proud of Colorado for expanding services.

“I think it's a great testament to the heart of Colorado that a decade ago, we had the foresight to implement a program,” Ulibarri said. “If I have a broken tail light or if I have, you know, go two miles over the speed limit, I might get a ticket, but I'm not going to have a consequence. That means I'll never get to see my kids again.”

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