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Immigrant organizers claim victory in their push to get Driver’s Licenses for All, as legislation is introduced in Michigan

October 31, 2019

Yesterday, Movimiento Cosecha and a coalition known as Drive Forward Michigan, held a press conference to announce that after two years of organizing, Michigan legislators have finally introduced legislation in both the Michigan Senate and the House to allow undocumented immigrants to obtain a Michigan driver’s license.

The Drive Safe bills, introduced today by Senator’s Stephanie Chang and Winnie Brinks in the Senate and Reps. Alex Garza and Rachel Hood in the House, would restore access to driver’s licenses for immigrants in Michigan. The bills are – Senate Bills 631 and 632 and House Bills 5192 and 5193.

Movimiento Cosecha GR organizer Gema Lowe welcomed people (in Spanish & English) to the press conference and introduced Idalia Tinoco, a local restaurant owner and member of Movimiento Cosecha GR to speak first. Idalia spoke about why having a driver’s license is important to immigrants and how this is one step closer in the process of immigrant justice in Michigan.

The second speaker, Ana Isabel, also an organizer with Movimiento Cosecha GR, talked about why it is imperative for undocumented immigrants to obtain a driver’s license and how it is the culmination of two years of struggle to raise awareness and mobilize communities across the state.

There were also speakers from the Michigan Immigrant Rights Center and the ACLU, both of which are part of the coalition known as Drive Forward Michigan.

In the coming weeks and months it will be interesting to see which legislators support these bills and how quickly the state will act on the matter of driver’s licenses for all. If there is one thing that we have learned about Movimiento Cosecha over the past two years is that they will continue to apply pressure to in a variety of ways to make sure this legislation is passed.

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