NJ MVC Director Boosts Driver’s Licenses Campaign

Brenda “Sue” Fulton, chair and chief administrator of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC), showed her support of driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants at a rally in Passaic. (Photo via Make the Road New Jersey/Facebook)

The road to obtaining driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants in New Jersey has straightened and leads to Trenton, the site of the state’s legislative and executive branches.

On Aug. 25, New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission chair and chief administrator Brenda “Sue” Fulton surprised everyone by showing up at a march held to call for driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants organized by Make the Road New Jersey in Passaic, dispelling any doubts regarding Gov. Phil Murphy’s support for the cause.

“All New Jersey residents are safer when its drivers are trained to drive and possess a driver’s license, license plate and some kind of vehicle insurance. That is the policy the governor believes in and the one I believe in,” said the government official.

Sara Cullinane, director of Make the Road NJ, acknowledged that Fulton’s presence is a sign of significant support for the movement seeking to have licenses approved.

“It is about keeping streets and roads safer and families safe and together. We know that, without driver’s licenses, many immigrant families are unable to pick up their children from school or take them to the hospital in an emergency,” said Cullinane.

While the legislature evaluates the bill in its two chambers and then move to ask the governor to sign it, activists will march to Trenton on Sept. 6 to ask the government body to step on it and expedite the vote.

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The demonstration held in Passaic – part of the “Let’s Drive NJ” campaign – saw a strong presence of Mexican immigrants. Local business owners and entrepreneurs also turned up.

“This demand is not only being made by Mexicans,” said Mexican builder Jaime Delgado. “It is for all people like me who do not have a driver’s license, because we all have to go to other states to get a driver’s license, which is probably wrong. Also, those licenses expire, and that puts us at risk. That is why it is so important for our community to have the document here in our state.”

For Víctor Arrese, owner of Mar & Tierra Restaurant and Hispanic Solutions, the licenses will boost the economy of cities across New Jersey and make residents safer.

“We merchants have always backed this demand. We were just waiting for the right moment to show it,” he said.

Some 100 companies agreed to support the measure and posted signs in their windows and doors that read: “This business supports Let’s Drive NJ.”

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Passaic Mayor Hector Lora, born in the Dominican Republic, joined the march. (…)

“Today, we are fighting for rights many people thought would never be won. However, we know that, if we remain united, these rights will come. In a practical sense, this benefits the nation, because it will make roads safer,” said Lora.

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