The Hartford City Council unanimously approved a municipal identification program that would facilitate access to city services, programs and benefits for all Hartford residents, regardless of race, age, gender, arrest or conviction record, citizenship status or sexual orientation.

The program is expected to be rolled out in September.

The ACLU of Connecticut testified in support of the municipal ID program.

During a press conference last April, Stephen Glassman, Executive Director of the ACLU of Connecticut said, “Our friends, families and neighbors here in Hartford often face a number of difficulties securing identification. The inability to provide an ID can hinder their willingness to report crimes and stand up for their own basic rights. This kind of program could provide a big step toward protecting the rights of hard working people who improve our lives in Hartford.”

A city identification card would allow residents to apply for services, access the city’s health clinic, obtain food vendor licenses, open bank accounts and apply for housing and employment.

Municipal identification cards started in New Haven Connecticut and are now in cities throughout the country.

The move received the support of immigrants’ rights groups, charities serving the homeless, labor organizations and advocates for civil liberties.

The ACLU of Connecticut also pledged to enroll staff and board members who are residents of Hartford in the program.

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