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Governor Brown Signs Driver’s License Law for Immigrants in California

California is exercising its jurisdictional privilege as a member of the Union to benefit the large immigrant population of the Golden State. According to a recent report by the Union-Times San Diego, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that makes it easier for undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses.

On October 3rd, Governor Brown made history in the Los Angeles City Hall by signing a law that meets several compromises. The new driver’s licenses are not federal identification documents, but they empower immigrants by allowing them to drive to work, school, medical appointments, places of worship, etc. These licenses will clearly indicate the fact that they have been issued to undocumented immigrants, those who have not legally obtained permanent employment or family immigration status. The new law also includes a series of protections against racial profiling, discrimination and prejudice.

At the signing ceremony in Southern California, Governor Brown told a cheering crowd that the driver’s licenses are just the first step in a series of protections for immigrants in the Golden State. The Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department, Charlie Beck, stood by the Governor’s side and explained that the new law will cut down on unlicensed drivers. Immigrants will no longer have to fear going to traffic school or paying for a traffic ticket. In the past, immigrants have been afraid of becoming targets of federal surveillance should they exercise their driving privilege.

The California Endowment, a healthcare foundation in California, went on record to applaud the signing of Assembly Bill 60 and Governor Brown’s support of immigrants’ rights. Legal scholars have called attention to California’s progressive stance on immigration and its contrast with the stalled efforts of the U.S. Congress in this regard.

As with any other laws in California, there will be a waiting period before enactment, rulemaking and implementation. Immigrants are strongly encouraged to contact their immigration attorneys in San Diego and inquire about the progress of the law and what they must do in order to apply for this benefit.

Whether you have questions about the new license law for immigrants, need assistance with filing for visas or want more information about business and employment immigration in San Diego, you can contact KS Visa Law for all your immigration needs. Call 858-874-0711 for a complimentary consultation.

August 2017
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