This year, the members of the Hispanic Latino Commission of Michigan (HLCOM) are working in partnership with the Michigan Asian Pacific American Commission and Commission on Middle Eastern American Affairs to support the new Drive SAFE (Safety, Access, Freedom and Economy) bills introduced by Representative Hood and Representative Aiyash that would restore the ability for anyone who lives in Michigan to obtain a standard driver’s license or a state ID. The new legislation removes the 2008 language “lawful presence” and respects the dignity of any individual, regardless of their immigration status, in obtaining a standard license.
Passing the Drive SAFE bills would impact Michigan families and the economy in positive ways. The bills would ensure more Michiganders are able to get to and from work, school, healthcare, places of worship and allow them to meet their basic needs. The barrier of not being able to obtain a driver’s license and the need to drive without one inevitably impacts the entire family unit, regardless of immigration status. Additionally, we know that when people can drive more easily to meet their basic needs, they spend their money more freely at local businesses and strengthen our economy for the good of all.
Therefore, the commissions strongly support the Drive SAFE bills and encourage the House and Senate to vote to pass these bills, restoring safety to our roads and dignity to every person residing in Michigan. To this end, we need your encouraging support by calling your representatives to ensure that this opportunity comes to fruition.
The HLCOM Statewide Graduation is an annual event that recognizes the academic accomplishments of Latinx graduates from colleges and universities across our great state of Michigan. This year, the city of Flint hosted our 7th annual graduation. Genesee County Commissioner Aurora Sauceda was the keynote speaker and UM Graduate, Tomas Tello, also from Flint was our graduate keynote speaker. We also honored Dr. Vanessa Reynolds of WSU for receiving her Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.
In the future, we shall extend this celebration to include our high school youth who are graduating with an Associate’s Degree, as well as those achieving their certifications and apprenticeships in the skilled trades.