New York City residents are now able to sign up for idNYC – a government-issued identification card that is available to all residents age 14 and older. Immigration status does not matter. Demonstrating a truly open arms policy, the program applications have been translated into 25 languages available on-line.
This initiative was approved last year and is aimed at those who do not currently have a government-issued ID, including the elderly, homeless and an estimated 500,000 immigrants in the city without legal documentation.
Initially, the idNYC application process was walk-in and apply – which swiftly resulted in long lines – now you must make an appointment. The administrators of the program hadn’t anticipated on the overwhelming demand. Thousands of New Yorkers (approximately 5,700) have enrolled in the city’s ID program since it launched on January 12, 2915, and more than 55,000 others have booked appointments.
NYC created an incentive program to entice all New Yorkers, regardless of their immigration status, to get a card. Cardholders are eligible for free memberships at 33 cultural institutions as well as other discounts. The idNYC card enables residents to access City services and City buildings, such as schools. In addition, the card can be presented as proof of identification for interacting with the police and is an accepted form of identification for opening a banking account at select financial institutions. It is also your library card.