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Connecticut city becomes first in US to issue IDs for undocumented immigrants

[JURIST] A controversial law offering ID cards to illegal immigrants went into effect Tuesday in New Haven, Connecticut. The municipal identification cards, which will be available at a cost of $10 for adults and $5 for children and will not distinguish citizens from undocumented immigrants, will allow cardholders to access public libraries, parks and recreational sites, and other municipal services as well as act as debit cards and pay for parking meters. Supporters of the law, including New Haven Mayor John DeStefano Jr. [official profile], believe it will help encourage immigrants to cooperate with police and "build a stronger community," but opponents worry it will bring more illegal immigrants to the area.

The city Board of Alderman approved [JURIST report] the law last month, in contrast with immigration [JURIST news archive] ordinances adopted in other local communities, such as the ordinance [DOC text; JURIST report] in Farmers Branch, Texas which would bar landlords from renting apartments to most undocumented immigrants. The ordinance has been blocked [JURIST report] by a US federal judge as legal challenges [JURIST report] are underway. AP has more.

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