Undocumented gain license rights

A shiny laminated card sits in the windowed area of most wallets in America, resembling the freedom that most teenagers are eager to have. Getting a driver license is an American rite of passage that is now being extended to a larger group.
Assembly Bill 60 has allowed for undocumented citizens to drive legally on the road as they too can become licensed drivers.
On Jan. 2, California joined nine other states who are already issuing driver licenses to individuals who cannot show proof of a legal presence in the United States. Applicants, however, must show proof of residency in California with any of the documents listed on the Department of Motor Vehicle’s webpage for AB60.
Citizens of 136 countries around the world are able to apply with their foreign passport as long as they meet the other requirements.
Teenagers who immigrated to America no longer have to feel ridiculed as their classmates share the nerve racking experience of taking the behind the wheel driver’s test and exchange celebratory comments, knowing they have no horror story to share.

I think there are going to be less accidents and more accountability.

— Alejandra Lupercio

Senior Alejandra Lupercio understands the benefits of AB60. “I think it’s a good idea,” she said. While Lupercio herself is not an undocumented citizen, she shares that members of her family put themselves at risk everyday behind the wheel. “I have family that doesn’t have papers and they drive (without a license) and it’s dangerous,” she said. “I think there are going to be less accidents and more accountability.”

Sophomore Joel Castillo, who in the past two years has received a visa, thinks that it is a significant improvement also since he feels he was basically “tossed over the border.”
Since the Jan. 2 implementation date, there have been 217,000 issued tests (behind-the-wheel and written) with 25,300 issued driver licenses in California, according to the DMV weekly update on Tuesday.