Senior Policy Attorney Renee Murphy testified at a joint public hearing before the DC Council’s Committee on Transportation and the Environment and the Committee on the Judiciary regarding the “Improving Access to Identity Documents Act of 2016” and the “Driver’s License Fair Access and Equity Amendment Act of 2016.” The “Improving Access to Identity Documents Act of 2016” would require the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to waive the fee for issuance of copies of vital records, motor vehicle operator’s permits, and identification cards for resident with gross incomes equal to or less than 200% of the federal poverty guideline. The “Driver’s License Fair Access and Equity Amendment Act of 2016” would require the DMV to include oral or written language services to persons with limited or no-English proficiency and to provide mandatory driver’s education to qualified applicants at low or no cost. It would also provide substantially equivalent procedures for the application of and assessment for limited purpose driver’s license and identification cards.
In her testimony, Renee pointed out the necessity of these vital records for District residents to fully participate in society. She specifically highlighted the significant impact the “Improving Access to Identity Documents Act of 2016” would have for DC’s low-income residents by sharing the story of a client who lost her job due to her inability to afford the renewal fee for her driver’s license. Regarding the “Driver’s License Fair Access and Equity Amendment Act of 2016,” Renee discussed the struggles of District residents who are limited English proficient or need a limited purpose license and how the proposed legislation would affirms their rights to language access and equal treatment.
Click below to read her full testimony.