MAYOR DESTEFANO RESPONDS TO QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS REGARDING MUNICPAL IDENTIFICATION PROGRAM
(5/31/2007) NEW HAVEN- During a press conference today, Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. discussed the importance of the City’s proposed Municipal Identification program that would offer City-issued identification cards to all residents of New Haven. The Board of Aldermen will hold a final vote on the acceptance of private funds for this program on Monday, June 4th. The private funds would sustain the program’s labor, materials and additional expenses for the period of one year, creating no burden on tax payers and not requiring funding from the City.
The identification cards, to be titled “Elm City Resident Cards,” will allow participants access to the public library, City parks and recreational resources, and will serve as an acceptable means of identification when dealing with police or City government. The Elm City cards will also contain a debit feature through Parxmart that can be used as a form of payment with participating Downtown merchants and in the City’s parking meters.
“This card will allow everyone who lives in New Haven the opportunity to have a qualified identity, a name that will be acknowledged by the City, the police department, hospitals, merchants and the community,” said DeStefano. “At the end of the day, it’s all about community – about people from all walks of life living in this City, sending our children to the same successful schools and living on the same streets, together as neighbors. Our community is one that values the contributions of every individual and for that reason we should each have the right to be called by our name. The Elm City Resident Card confirms this.”
Opposition groups from outside of New Haven have made efforts to confuse the public through a series of emails, racially divisive statements and miscommunication to community leaders and the news media attacking the program and the Mayor.
“There is no room in New Haven for people who hate, who are prejudiced or who cannot appreciate that we are one unified community, regardless of our differences,” said DeStefano. “I stand behind the municipal identification program and urge the Board of Aldermen to grant life to this program on Monday.”
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