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Colorado DMVs offers driver’s licenses to undocumented migrants, international students

<i>KCNC</i><br/>Undocumented residents and international students can now obtain a license at any Colorado DMV.
Undocumented residents and international students can now obtain a license at any Colorado DMV.

By Jasmine Arenas

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    DENVER (KCNC) — On the 10th anniversary of the Colorado Road and Community Safety Act, undocumented residents can now obtain a license at any DMV.

Former Gov. John Hickenlooper signed into law the Colorado Road and Community Safety Act in 2013, which made obtaining a standard driver’s license a possibility for undocumented individuals and international students.

But during that time only four offices provided the service, now any DMV is able to do it.

Yerania works with Mountain Dreamers and is now paying it forward.

“This is what happened to me and I don’t want it to happen to anyone else,” said Yerania.

She knows the struggle. When she arrived to Colorado in 2014 with her son just one year after the signing of the Colorado Road and Community Safety Act.

At the time only four offices in the state provided license services for the undocumented and international students.

The closest to Yerania was about one to two hours away. If she forgot a document, she had to go back home and start again.

“I had to go to the DMV five times, in Colorado this is really important because there are people who had to travel just two hours,” said Yerania.

Now all 36 of the state’s driver’s license office locations will offer appointments to all.

Pilar Carillo with Driver’s License For All is thrilled about this change.

“The most important thing is people will have access to driver’s licenses and won’t have to wait to get to get an appointment,” said Carillo.

The law allows all Coloradans to obtain a standard driver’s license or I.D. card regardless of their status.

All they have to do is provide proof of identity and Colorado residency of more than two years.

Prior to this being available across the state Carrillo said people would sell appointments because there wasn’t enough access, now they don’t have to wait or pay someone to get them an appointment.

“People can now go and it will be less stressful,” said Carillo.

Since the law in 2013, more than 250,000 residents have benefited from the program.

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