Next Step in Protecting Immigrant Driver’s Information

by | Feb 22, 2021

For Immediate Release  

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Contact:

Press@vacir.org

Next Step in Protecting Immigrant Driver’s Information

Richmond, Va. — Building off of passage of Driver Privilege Card bill for undocumented immigrants, today the House of Delegates passed H.B. 2163, the DMV Data Privacy Protection bill. H.B. 2163 would protect the personal information of Virginia drivers from being bought and sold by private companies and prevent ICE from misusing it for civil immigration purposes. This information includes where a person lives, what car they drive, and a photo of what they look like.

Over 270,000+ undocumented Virginians are now eligible for a Driver’s Privilege Card. In January 2021, the first month of implementation over 2,000 drivers were able to receive a Driver Privilege Card. While obtaining the right to drive was a major victory, now thousands are giving personal information to the Department of Motor  Vehicles. 

“Immigrant families deserve to know that when they go home that ICE will not be at their door waiting for them,” said Monica Sarmiento, Executive Director of the Virginia Coalition for Immigrant Rights. “The General Assembly now has the ability to rebuild trust and continue the mission of improving the quality of life for the immigrant community.”

Anyone obtaining or eligible to apply for a DPC could run the risk of having their information shared unethically. There are several states who previously shared DMV data with federal law enforcement agencies, such as Washington, Vermont, Utah, North Carolina, and Georgia. In granting access to the DMV database, states are feeding into the ICE pipeline, handing ICE a list of potential deportees.

H.B. 2163, DMV Data Privacy Protection Bill will now be sent to the Virginia State Senate.

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