Letter: Immigrant licensing would be safer

Patrick Young, program director of the Central American Patrick Young, program director of the Central American Refugee Center, speaks at a rally celebrating National Voter Registration Day. (Sept. 24, 2013) Photo Credit: Newsday / Karen Wiles Stabile

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The letters to the editor said that allowing immigrants in the country illegally to obtain New York State driver's licenses defies all logic. In fact, it's that statement that defies all logic.

The fact is that driver's licenses for these immigrants would make all of us safer. Obtaining a driver's license would mean that immigrants here illegally would have to pass driving tests and get liability insurance.

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Any time we bring immigrants of any status under the law, it benefits everyone, and that includes driver's licenses. It would make driving safer for everyone in New York, it would bring additional accountability to the system, and it would increase immigrants' ability to participate in and contribute to Long Island's economy.

We should keep in mind, though: This does not excuse Washington's failure to fix our broken federal immigration system. We could spare state and local governments these needless challenges by passing fair and accountable immigration reform with a path to citizenship.

Maryann Sinclair Slutsky, Old Westbury

Editor's note: The writer is the executive director of Long Island Wins, an immigrant advocacy organization.
 

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