Several local governments in Wisconsin are interested in issuing local identification cards to residents. One is Milwaukee County. But some state lawmakers believe the locals are overstepping their authority – so legislators are considering a bill that would prohibit municipalities from issuing local ID cards. More than 50 people showed up to testify at a public hearing in Madison on Tuesday; most oppose the ban. Guadalupe Gallardo has a lot to say about any legislation she feels would restrict immigrants. She’s originally from Mexico but has lived in the U.S. for decades. “We’re going to raise our voice you know to fight for immigrants. They want to be free, they want to work. They are afraid. They’re afraid to go out, they’re afraid to go to doctors or schools because the police are going to stop them,” Gallardo says.
And Gallardo says if police stop you and you don’t have any identification, it can lead to even more trouble. Gallardo was one of dozens of people who boarded a bus and headed to Madison to speak out against the legislation. Milwaukee County, in conjunction with the City of Milwaukee, have been working toward issuing local photo IDs. County Supervisor Marina Dimitrijevic says they are just a few months away.
She says the Milwaukee program is being modeled after one in New York where people can use the IDs for a number of purposes, including at banks and doctors’ offices.