Middletown agrees to pass law to provide municipal ID cards to all residents

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MIDDLETOWN -

A city in Orange County is taking steps towards offering municipal identification cards.

MIddletown's Common Council agreed to pass an identification card program Wednesday, making them the third in the state after New York City and Poughkeepsie to offer municipal I.D. cards.

For the past year, immigrants in Middletown say they have been fighting for the I.D. card program. They say the program will provide identification to undocumented residents and others without I.D.

Ignacio Avecedo works for Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson, the grassroots organization that helped members push for the I.D. programs in Poughkeepsie, Middletown and Kingston.

"For them to be heard, for them to come up and speak for themselves, it was a big win," says Avecedo.

Middletown Mayor Joseph DeStefano says the card will allow people to use city parks and possibly as an I.D. for the library and local schools. He says it also gives businesses the ability to offer resident discounts.

The mayor also pledged to keep any undocumented information private unless forced by federal agents.

"We would not turn anything over to anyone unless ordered by a court of law," says Mayor DeStefano.

City officials say the new cards will include the person's name and address, and they're considering adding age, date of birth and height.

The cards should be available early next year.

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