Bill passed with veto proof majority allows drivers’ licenses for undocumented immigrants
(BOSTON – 05/05/2022) The Massachusetts State Senate on Thursday passed An Act Relative to Work and Family Mobility. The Work and Family Mobility Act would allow Massachusetts residents who lack federal immigration status to apply for a Massachusetts standard driver’s license, which does not include a REAL ID. Senator Cindy F. Friedman (D-Arlington) voted in favor of the bill which passed with a veto proof majority.
“The law enforcement community, advocacy groups and immigrants across the Commonwealth have made it clear that allowing those who lack federal immigration status to drive will make our roads safer and will make our communities more welcoming to immigrant families, many of whom have children who are United States citizens,” said Senator Friedman, Vice Chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means. “This bill is the product of years of advocacy, and I am so proud of everyone that worked so hard to see this initiative through. I am also glad that my colleagues help pass this legislation with a veto proof majority in both chambers, getting us one step closer to making this law a reality and ensuring it benefits families all over Massachusetts.”
The bill has received widespread support from members of the law enforcement community, advocacy groups, and members of the immigrant community. It proposes strict identity documentation criteria, asking for applicants to present two valid, unexpired identity documents. It makes no change to existing law requiring that all driver’s license applicants prove that they live in the Commonwealth. The bill passed by the Senate is nearly identical to the version that previously passed the House of Representatives earlier this year.
A version of this legislation having previously passed in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, the legislation moves back to the House for further consideration.