Next month, North Carolina will begin to issue driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants who fall under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which applies to people whose parents brought them into the U.S. illegally and meet certain federal criteria, including age, to stay in the U.S. legally for up to two years on a work permit.
North Carolina licenses will feature the phrase “No Lawful Status” written in magenta and highlighted in yellow, as well as a bright magenta band at the top, reported MyFox8.com.
Republican legislators have introduced a bill to delay the licenses from being issued on March 25, reports the Charlotte Observer. Republicans claim “voter fraud” as one reason to block driver’s licenses.
However, some civil rights advocates claim the illegal immigrant driver's licenses will be a “scarlet letter” because they look different and say, “No Lawful Status.”
“North Carolina should not be making it harder for aspiring citizens to integrate and contribute to our communities by branding them with a second-class driver’s license,” said American Civil Liberties Union attorney Raul Pinto. “There is simply no reason for officials to stigmatize people who are in the U.S. legally with an unnecessary marker that could lead to harassment, confusion, and racial profiling.”