Migrants Breaking Records Signing Up for IDs in Effort to Become Official New York City Residents

Applications for the city’s official ID cards are up 50% in 2023 from the prior year

Migrants in a long line overnight hoping to receive a placement in a city shelter, December 6, 2023 in the East Village neighborhood of New York City. Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images

Migrants in record numbers have signed up for New York City identification cards, a first step in becoming an official resident of the Big Apple, according to a report.

The ID-NYC cards, official photo IDs for New York City residents and available for people regardless of their immigration status, can be used for a variety of services, from applying for health insurance to Section 8 housing.

The number of cards given out increased by almost 50% between 2022 – with 82,085 distributed between Jan. 1 and Dec. 15 of that year – and the same period this year, with 112,238 given out in 2023, The New York Post reports.

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These increased numbers reflect the recent massive influx of migrants who have come to the city, with nearly 100,000 asylum seekers arriving since 2022.

The Post reports that the main branch of the Queens Public Library, used as a central location to obtain an IDNYC, has been inundated with migrants seeking the cards.

“There’ve been lines wrapped around the building — I’ve seen people starting getting here at 3 a.m.,” Queens Library President and CEO Dennis Walcott told The Post.

He told the outlet that people seeking the cards have come from Latin America, but also from many other areas of the world, including Africa.

“It’s an important step in life — having an ID card. We want people to get access to various services,” Walcott told The Post.

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This effort is part of New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ all-out efforts to help the migrants, a spokesperson told The Post.

The 50% increase in enrollments between 2022 and 2023 “comes on the heels of the city expanding the list of eligible documentation for IDNYC to meet the needs of the most vulnerable, including asylum seekers,” Kayla Mamelak told The Post.

At the Queens Library, migrants not only receive help with obtaining their IDNYC but with school assistance, job help, and learning English in ESL classes, the Post reports.

“Through their interactions with the asylum seekers, our staff has found out that most of the people are from Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Haiti,” Queens Library spokeswoman Elizabeth de Bourbon told the outlet.

“They also are seeing people from Mauritania, Mali, Guinea, Bangladesh, India and China,” she told The Post. “We also have encountered a handful of Russian speakers, potentially from Ukraine.”

Written by Diane Herbst for The Epoch Times ~ December 25, 2023

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