The Unified Government Board of Commissioners passed the Safe and Welcoming City Act Feb. 10 by a 6-4 vote.
The new act allows Kansas City, KS residents who do not have photo identification to obtain a municipal identification card.
A municipal identification card is not a driver’s license and typically requires fewer barriers than a state and federal identification would require, like a permanent address, which not everyone has. It would allow community members without a state ID to open a bank account, see a doctor, apply for public benefits and to engage with police.
The act also ensures that the Unified Government does not use its own resources to enforce federal immigration law.
A coalition of Kansas City, KS, organizations, including MORE2, Advocates for Immigrant Rights and Reconciliation, KCK NAACP and others have rallied for the act for the past five years.
Rev. Rick Behrens, pastor of Grandview Park Presbyterian Church of KCK said, “This is a big win and hard earned. Congratulations KCK for doing the right thing and loving our neighbors. This is a new era for Wyandotte County and a big step toward equity for all.”