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Mayor Elorza creates Municipal ID Program in Providence



Jorge Elorza

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza has established a Municipal ID Program by executive order. Municipal IDs are identification cards that will allow all city residents, “regardless of whether they have other state or federally issued identification” to access City services and programs.

“This executive order is the first step towards expanding opportunities for residents who face difficulties accessing personal identification including immigrants, students, the homeless and members of the LGBTQ community,” said Elorza in a statement that accompanied his executive order. “These IDs boost pride, increase economic opportunity and bolster public health and safety. As leaders, it is the central role of mayors to ensure that all residents feel welcome, engaged and supported. Providence is an inclusive, forward-thinking city which values the dignity and contributions of its diverse communities. At a time when the forces that are dividing us are stronger than they have been in any of our lifetimes, it is important to take action to reassure all residents that they belong—no matter our differences.”

The goals of this Program include the following:

  • To continue to promote inclusive, compassionate, and forward-thinking policies to support all of the City’s residents.
  • To ensure that the City’s most vulnerable and marginalized residents are supported.
  • To advance Providence as a Society that reflects values such as inclusion, equity and respect for the dignity of each individual.
  • To provide any and all City residents with a primary or alternative means of demonstrating residence in the City, for purposes including, but not limited to, accessing City services and activities and providing identification to City law enforcement. Provided, however, that possession of a municipal identification card is not a prerequisite to access to any program, Service or activity for which a City resident is otherwise eligible.

The new Municipal IDs will not be mandatory for Providence residents.

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Previous reporting on this can be accessed here:

Steve Ahlquist is a frontline reporter in Rhode Island. He has covered human rights, social justice, progressive politics and environmental news for nearly a decade.