Chicago: Some illegal immigrants fear applying for licenses

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by Sophia Tareen

AP

Posted on December 30, 2012 at 10:13 AM

Updated Sunday, Dec 30 at 11:16 AM

CHICAGO (AP) -- When Illinois' top political leaders touted a proposal to allow illegal immigrants to obtain driver's licenses, it was called a public safety measure and had the backing of immigrant rights advocates.

But the idea is running into some resistance among illegal immigrants themselves.

For some of Illinois' estimated 250,000 undocumented residents of driving age, volunteering an address and photograph to a state database seems risky, possibly more than driving without a license.

Faviola Villagomez was brought to the U.S. illegally from Mexico as a child. She says she'd hesitate to give her information, which might make her a target for deportation.

However, the bill's sponsors dismiss that concern, calling it public safety matter not immigration reform. It may be called for a vote in January.

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