Undocumented Community members, allies and business owners confront Assembly Speaker Coughlin to put the driver’s license bill up for a vote now!
Perth Amboy, NJ- On International Workers Day, New Jersey immigrant communities mobilize to push for the state’s General Assembly to vote on a bill that would allow undocumented people to apply for licenses. Democratic leadership is currently repeating history by not putting up the bill for vote, just as Senate Majority Leader Sweeny did in 2015 when he last had the chance. Undocumented people deserve action not promises. Delaying justice will not be tolerated as a continued pattern within the party that claims to be representative of the immigrant community.
Because of high necessity for drivers licenses, New Jersey communities currently have 15 active circles of undocumented led groups that are coordinating 300 people today to demand they be given their dignity by getting the right to a driver’s license. We demand that New Jersey be the 13th state to let undocumented people obtain a driver license.
“As an undocumented single mother without a license I risk being seperated from my daughters everyday. I need a driver’s license to be able to provide a better life for my daughters.” — Norma Morales, Cosecha New Jersey
Arriving to assembly speaker Coughlin’s office we chanted until the speaker himself came outside.
After the crowd asked when he would put the licenses up for a vote he did not say anything to the community that we have not heard before, more promises and vague political process.
Three children then went in front of the speaker to describe their experience
“We have gone through the rain and the snow if we had transportation we don’t have to suffer anymore nobody is asking for promises anymore” David 8
“I want you to give us license because my parents walk me to school and I want to support my family and I can’t do that if my parents don’t have licenses. My parents just want a good life for me I joined Cosecha like the other kids and I am asking you now why you haven’t passed it yet. I have been marching with my parents hoping that we would get licenses soon”
“I was that little girl at one point. I stayed up at night afraid that I would lose my mom. It is especially hard with siblings because if my parents were deported I wouldn’t know what to do. Licenses help our parents get better jobs”
Even after hearing the testimonies of the children the assembly speaker refused to commit to any timeline.
Movimiento Cosecha is a national movement to win permanent protection, dignity and respect for all 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. Cosecha New Jersey is one of many organizations across New Jersey mobilizing for driver license legislation to pass at the state level. Cosecha also has campaigns for driver’s licenses in Michigan, Georgia, Indiana, and Massachusetts.