Immigrant Driver’s Licenses in Illinois

On Nov. 12th ,non-citizen immigrants have started the process  to apply for “temporary driver’s licenses” in Illinois.

This comes a year after Gov. Pat Quinn signed the law into effect.

Quinn said the new law will make Illinois roads safer because illegal immigrants will now be forced to take the driver’s test in order to operate a vehicle.

The driver’s license tests will be offered in Spanish, Polish, Mandarin Chinese and Korean.  Executive Director of the Korean American Resource and Cultural Center Sik Son said that this is a victory for immigrants in an interview.

“Yeah, a lot of immigrant right organizations worked for that. We know that it isn’t perfect. I think it’ll be really helpful for an amount of people. I’m getting calls for community members about how they can get that. The response has been positive,” said Son.

Some have said the new law may not work because immigrants could fear deportation by singing up for the license.

“I can not say there is no fear about that, but there is more need to have driver’s license than fear,” said Son.

I think in Asian American people in terms of community size we are smaller than latino community, there is more of a fear than in larger community. People’s response to that coming out to ask for that information is good,” said Son.

The Chicago Tribune said that there have been long times at the Illinois Secretary of State offices where immigrants are attempting to sign up for an application appointment. The state will be able to sign up fewer than  120 people a day. Applications can submitted to the state on starting December 3rd.



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