In theory a citizen of Houston, but in practice a person who has been desperately trying to find a way to prove it, Lucinda Rodriguez, who moved from Mexico eight years ago has since then worked hard to support her family, is still an illegal immigrant. Not being able to prove her legal status means she cannot receive treatment at a local hospital, receive a parcel at a mail center or cash a check in a bank, or simply rent a DVD or a CD, unless she has a government issued photo identification. However, last week she saw some light on the horizon – the Houston Translation Services worker volunteered to translate her documents so she could get a community identification card issued by a coalition of civic groups and approved by San Jose authorities. Even though Lucinda’s new home now is Houston, she feels that humiliation is what you will get without the proper identification. When the state of Arizona passed a new law according to which any person who does not own the proper immigration documents will be considered an illegal alien, San Jose’s administration decided to take measures toward providing its immigrant citizens with all the necessary immigration documentation so that they have no problems with the authorities.
Aliens will also receive photo identification cards by the local authorities in a number of other cities, such as Los Angeles and Austin. San Diego has also joined the host of cities in which the immigrants will be provided with ID cards after June 12, while other communities will soon start issuing cards after they have approved programs. Austin Translation Services worker and representative of the Latino Immigration Defense Carolina Herrera has made it clear that the liberal cities and Arizona’s lawmakers have invested a lot of effort in the same cause. There have been calls for a nationally mandated identification card for ages and in particular after the September 11 attacks, but not until last month were they put forward when a group of senators revealed a draft of a complete immigration reform. The employers will require of the prospective employees to show an identity card containing biometric data, a measure which should limit the number of illegally working immigrants.
It is wrong to think, however, that legal residency or permission to work will be automatically granted by having such a card. Rather they would make sure illegal immigrants are admitted to services and places that require standard identification. These cards can be used in San Francisco to seek help from private social service agencies, gain access to doctors’ offices and medical centers, as well as to visit public facilities like libraries for instance. Furthermore, illegal aliens who live in fear of deportation will have more confidence about reporting crimes, state government officials, who also hope that they will be able to help those immigrants who are victims of crimes but have such cards. Consequently, the Dallas Translation Services workers have been really busy recently translating various legal documents. People who live in America must be healthy and secure, is the opinion expressed by Latino liaison activist and translator Paola Santiago Lorenzo. One of the means to achieve this stability is to have well-functioning identity card program. Those immigrants who have such cards will be allowed to use services like cashing a check in a bank, opening a bank account or simply sending and receiving money. In this way immigrants will be enabled to deposit their pay checks, so that they do not carry large sums of cash, which will attractive to thieves.