The city of Philadelphia has taken a historic step today by launching its Municipal ID Program for all residents of the city. This government issued ID will be made available to all Philadelphia residents and is a huge victory for Philadelphia’s Immigrant community. For the first time, many of our city’s most marginalized communities will have a government issued ID to be able to identify themselves when going about their lives in our city.
Juntos, along with other community based groups, have been working for years with then Councilman Jim Kenney along with Councilwoman Maria Quinones Sanchez to not only get this program up and running but to ensure that it was accessible, secure and most of all available for ALL residents of our city.
For our undocumented community, this is a huge step in the fight against deportation as the lack of a government issued ID is often times the first way people get funnelled into the deportation machine. It’s important to recognize that this is not solely a form of identification for undocumented immigrants though, but for many other communities that may lack access to a form of identification such as returning citizens, people experiencing homelessness and the LGBTQ community.
This victory would not have been possible had it not be for the labor, organizing, and advocacy being done by community members who have been directly impacted by the lack of identification for years.
“Today Philly has shown once again it is not afraid to do what is right for our communities. The start of the city’s municipal ID program is a huge victory for many in our city. The mere act of having a government issued ID means that for the first time many of Philadelphia’s marginalized communities are being officially recognized by our city. From undocumented immigrant, to returning citizens as well as members of the LGBTQ community, this is a huge victory and a step forward to further integrate into the fabric of our city.” Said Miguel Andrade, Communications Manager of Juntos
The municipal ID program is a powerful step towards protecting the lives and the sanctity of immigrant families in Philadelphia. Juntos looks forward to working with the city to continue fighting for the rights and protection of not only of the immigrant community, but all marginalized communities as well.